Carlton coach Mick Malthouse admits he needs more of his AFL players to stand up under pressure.
The Blues started well against West Coast at Domain Stadium on Friday night, leading by two goals at quarter-time with Chris Judd on fire with 12 first quarter possessions.
However, West Coast coach Adam Simpson put Matt Rosa onto Judd the rest of the night and held him to seven touches in three quarters and Carlton only kicked three more goals with the Eagles dominating to win 20.11 (131) to 9.8 (62) with Josh Kennedy starring with 10 goals.
Malthouse was frustrated other players in the Blues team didn’t take it upon themselves to make a stand in the 69-point loss when Judd was shut down.
“We don’t want to be a one man midfield, we are trying to get other people around him. Rosa did a great job but the hit outs were 27 to 59 and we just went back into our shell,” Malthouse said.
“It seems to be a common occurrence and we’ve got to find people who can stand up under pressure, and make the right decision and at least hold up for a little while until we regather, but that’s not happening at the moment.”
The Blues have lost to Richmond and West Coast to open the season with Essendon to come next Saturday.
“We will keep going until we turn things around, if we turn things around. It just needs people to stand up and take control, to take charge,” Malthouse said.
As for the Eagles, Simpson was delighted with the effort from his team to dominate after quarter-time to bounce back from the disappointing loss to the Western Bulldogs.
The defence held up led by Jeremy McGovern and Will Schofield in the absence of Eric Mackenzie and Mitch Brown who have suffered season-ending injuries, but no question Kennedy’s 10-goal haul against his old side was the highlight.