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West Coast Eagles

WAFL: Allen focused on Friday night clash with Royals

Matt Allen is averaging 21.8 disposals per game for the WAFL Eagles this year

As the WAFL Eagles prepare for yet another must-win clash against East Perth on Friday night, midfielder Matthew Allen says the side will not be carrying any scars from their round six clash, which saw the Royals prevail by 34-points on a wet and windy night at Leederville Oval.

“We’ve reflected on it briefly,” Allen said.

“Obviously we reflected on it pretty solidly earlier in the year.

“They got us in round six and they played some really good footy and they’ve played some really good footy this year, when they’re up and about they’re tough to beat.”

Allen currently leads the team for possessions this season along with fellow midfielder Hamish Brayshaw, averaging 21.8 disposals per game.

The Eagles’ on-baller credited his teammates for his consistent work in the guts of the ground.

“I’m really enjoying my time in there,” he said.

“It’s good to mix with a few older guys and a few younger guys.

“We’ve got Keegan Brooksby in the ruck, Brendon Ah Chee, Hamish, Brady Grey, Brayden Ainsworth; we’ve got a good mix in there and we’ve progressed each week, which has been really pleasing.”

Allen was also full of praise for the Eagles’ backline, who have proved a formidable back-six led by key defenders Josh Rotham and Tom Cole.

“Our defenders have been superb all year,” he said.

“Rotham has had a super year, Cole has been fantastic, Harry Edwards is back from injury now and Andrew Fisher and Drew Petrie have added a lot of experience down back.

“All the boys have been really strong in the contest and they’ve been holding up for us year.”

Allen’s recent run of form saw the on-baller cop some extra attention from Perth in round 18.

Despite being tagged for four quarters, the midfielder still managed to impact the game, collecting 15 disposals and four marks.

Allen said it was a valuable learning experience

“It was a slightly different experience, but it was a good one to have,” he said.

“My teammates got around me and it was just about staying focused and trying to win the football. In the end it was good to come away with the win and keep our season alive.”

After entering the mid-season bye with a 2-7 record, the Eagles have turned things around in the second half of the season, winning five of their last seven contests to sit just one game out of the top-five.

Allen said while finals were within reach, the side had to remain focused on Friday’s matchup.

“All we’ve really looked at is East Perth,” he said.

“If we don’t get the win there I don’t think it’s overly likely (we’ll play finals).

“So we’ll just focus on East Perth for the time being and hopefully get the job done there and we’ll deal with the next week after that.”

The Eagles take on East Perth at Leederville Oval on Friday. Bouncedown is at 7.10pm.