Saints clash key to Port AFL aspirations

Port Adelaide’s flickering AFL finals hopes hinge on Sunday’s home match against St Kilda, defender Matthew Broadbent says.

Broadbent says Port believe they can launch a late-season charge, but also realise a slip against the Saints will cruel their finals ambitions.

“We’re not really talking about finals,” he told reporters on Monday.

“We have got another big week this week against St Kilda and that is as far as we’re looking.

“We obviously understand that if we don’t get that right, then there is probably nothing really at the end (of the season).”

The Power downed Essendon on Saturday night to remain 12th on the ladder, two wins outside the top eight.

Former Bomber ruckman Paddy Ryder kicked three last-term goals to win the match for Port, with Power players noting Essendon coach James Hird described Ryder as lucky.

“I don’t know if it was luck,” Broadbent said of Ryder.

“He was a pretty significant and important part of the match for us in that last quarter, and was certainly a key factor in the way the match went in the end.

“We’re lucky he’s on our team.

“Since Paddy has come in, it has been a work in progress for him to fit into the team and how the structures work. He is certainly building his own form and confidence.”

Broadbent said Port’s collective confidence was also rising that they can mount a late rush for the finals.

“There is a little bit of belief building,” he said.

“We’re still not playing our best footy consistently enough but in patches we are getting stronger.”

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