AFL hub not to blame for Eagles' woes

Ed Jackson
Nic Naitanui says West Coast's poor AFL results are down to them not competing in the middle

Queensland hub life is not to blame for West Coast's poor AFL form.

The Eagles have suffered back-to-back defeats so far in their Sunshine State road trip, losing to Gold Coast and Brisbane to slump to 1-2.

Ruckman Nic Naitanui isn't buying the excuse being so far from home is behind the defeats, however, saying it's simply a case of the Eagles not playing to conditions or matching their opponents.

"We're at one of the best places, Royal Pines is one of the greatest spots up here and you can't blame the hub," he said.

"It's better than half the guys' houses back home. You get your food cooked for you, your clothes washed.

"I don't think the hub has anything to do with it, albeit it's a little bit different and it's not the norm, but I think it's just time come down to our footy that we're playing on the weekends.

"There's not really too much to do with the change in scenario."

Both of West Coast's matches so far in Queensland have been at night and Naitanui admits the dewy conditions haven't suited the team's style of play.

Worringly, the Eagles have come unstuck in the contest with their much vaunted and experienced midfield losing the battle to both the Suns and Lions.

With an unbeaten and upbeat Port Adelaide up next, Naitanui said it's obvious where the Eagles need to improve at Metricon Stadium on Saturday.

That match is an afternoon game, meaning the dew shouldn't be an issue but the Power's in-form midfield is still a significant obstacle.

Coach Adam Simpson has made it clear he expects his midfield to respond and Naitanui is eager to see how his teammates bounce back.

"Some of those boys have a lot of pride ... they're even hungrier than ever to prove that they are really good and they are better than most midfields," he said.

"Simmo's put a bit of a challenge to our midfield this week again coming up against one of the best in the comp in Port Adelaide.

"I'm excited to see the Kellys, the Yeos, the Shueys react and show us what they've got."