Former Melbourne coach Paul Roos says the Demons will break their finals drought in 2018.
Following last year’s heart-breaking ending to the season. Roos said the club was primed for a finals assault this year, dismissing claims that the team is mentally weak.
“I think talent-wise, age-wise now they’re right in the sweet spot so I think they’ll definitely make the eight,” he said.
“I say that depending on injuries. Every team’s reliant on injuries but we’ve already seen in this early period going through the AFLX and pre-season they’ve got enormous depth, they’ve got talent and now they’re in the right age bracket so if I’m a Melbourne supporter I’m pretty excited going into this year.”
Injuries to key personnel last year, including co-captains Nathan Jones and Jack Viney, meant the Dees were without at least one of their stars almost every week last season, with Roos adding keeping them on the park will go a long way to their first finals appearance since 2006.
“If they can get good years out of some of those guys it will go a long way,” Roos said.
“Nathan Jones missed a lot of footy, Jack Viney missed a lot of footy and then you’ve got Gawn and Hogan. They’re probably their four most important players.”
Roos responded to claims that the team lacked the ticker required to compete with the best clubs.
“I don’t know how you can say that because they’ve turned over nearly their whole list in the last three years so most of these players that are playing now weren’t even playing four or five years ago,” he said.
“I can sense where they get frustrated, the Melbourne supporters. But their club’s totally different to what it was four years ago and they’ll definitely play finals this year pending a good run with injuries.”