Gold Coast cannot overestimate Adelaide’s emotions for Saturday’s AFL clash and must treat them as a normal opponent.
The Suns’ visit will be the third match for the Crows since the death of coach Phil Walsh.
After an outpouring of grief against West Coast and then a gutsy Showdown victory over Port Adelaide last weekend, Suns coach Rodney Eade doesn’t think Saturday’s game will be as full-on for the Crows.
He says the Suns must be prepared to face a determined and focused Crows with the same mindset as any of their other opponents.
“They’ve had fairly raw emotion for a few weeks so I don’t think there’ll be as much raw emotion, if that’s the right phrase,” Eade said.
“From what I can gather it’s trying to get back to work as normal.
“From our point of view I don’t think we can labour the point over that. It’s about an opponent that’s playing some good footy. They played well last week. It’s going to be a tough assignment for us on their home ground and that’s the way we’re prepared.”
The Suns will take a squad of 23 from Queensland with Charlie Dixon (ankle) still to fully prove his fitness.
Eade says given Dixon’s injury history, he won’t play if he’s in any doubt and if he does take the field he won’t be subjected to the rigours of ruck duties.
Harley Bennell will also make his return for the Suns after three weeks on the sidelines following the publication of photographs appearing to show him using illicit substances in 2013.
The Crows also have some welcome returns with 2013 club champion Rory Sloane to make his return from the fractured cheekbone which has sidelined him since round 13.
Sloane will almost certainly wear headgear to protect his cheek in the match but Eade says he won’t be receiving any special treatment.
“He’s just a talented player that comes in, we won’t be putting any extra attention on him,” he said.
Crows defender Daniel Talia has also been cleared to play despite suffering a concussion against Port last weekend.