If not for the outstanding efforts of Nathan Fyfe, it's doubtful Fremantle would have beaten Carlton.

If not for the outstanding efforts of Nathan Fyfe, it's doubtful Fremantle would have beaten Carlton. Photo: Paul Kane

Coach Ross Lyon is clearly unimpressed with the standard of football Fremantle has produced in the past two rounds, saying that type of play would take the Dockers "nowhere".

Lyon says that his side clearly needs to improve if it wants to be a contender for the premiership in 2014.

The Dockers fell over the line by five points against Carlton at Patersons Stadium on Thursday night, after losing to bottom side St Kilda by 58 points two weeks before.

Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky. Click for more photos

Dockers hold pre-game tribute to Maslin family

Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.

  • Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.
  • Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.
  • Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.
  • Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.
  • Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.
  • Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.
  • Rin Norris and Anthony Maslin - the parents of Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin - took part in an emotional tribute to WA's MH17 victims before the Dockers' clash with Carlton, releasing purple balloons into the sky.

They face Geelong at Simonds Stadium next round - albeit nine days after their win over Carlton - and then Hawthorn (home), Brisbane (Gabba) and Port Adelaide (home) to finish the home-and-away fixtures.

“Clearly we've got plenty of work to do. We need to improve. That footy is going to take us nowhere,” Lyon said after the narrow victory over Carlton.

“In the end, we did a lot right to get across the line, so we'll focus on that and then review the early stuff. 

“Our model is to identify and train it, so clearly the last two weeks haven't been great footy, pre or post the break. We've got some work to do.”

Lyon was particularly disappointed with the ease in which Carlton “walked it out of the middle and kicked six goals for the night”.

While Aaron Sandilands dominated the ruck knocks, with 46 hit-outs, including 16 centre square ruck taps, the Blues won the clearances from the middle of the ground 13 to 10.  

“I mean it just shouldn't happen, but it did,” Lyon said. “That's half their score, I think.”

Carlton kicked 11 goals for the night.

Lyon said that as well as work at centre bounces, his side would also be concentrating on their ball movement out of defence and general accountability before they play the Cats.

“We won't be breathing out,” he said.

“We need to improve, we'll train hard. And that was the message to the players after the game - we need to improve, we need to train well, and we need to get back to our very best football.”

Tendai Mzungu will miss the game against Geelong with a hamstring injury, while captain Matthew Pavlich will need to pass a concussion test during the next week before he can be declared as available.

When Fremantle beat the Cats by 15 points at Simonds Stadium in the qualifying final last season, Pavlich was dangerous in attack with 2.3, while Mzungu was a bit quiet, with just 11 disposals.

But Lyon doesn’t believe the result in last season’s final will provide any advantage next Saturday when they face the Cats.

“I think it's irrelevant,” he said.

”Where we're at last year to this year are poles apart. I always say past results don't count for the next one.”

In that game, midfielders Michael Barlow, David Mundy and Nat Fyfe were among the Dockers' best – the same players who got Fremantle over the line against Carlton.

Blues coach Mick Malthouse shut down Stephen Hill with tagger Ed Curnow, but he said it was impossible to shut down all of the Dockers stars.

“I think you can go four or five players that we could have and wanted to sit on, but you can't sit on everyone,” Malthouse said.

“They are a quality side, and when you analyse their best players, they are their best players roughly week in week out, so whether it's Hill, whether it's Fyfe, whether it's Mundy, or whether its Barlow, they have some really great, quality players.”

And Lyon has no issues with relying in his stars to get the side over the line.

Fyfe dominated the final term on Thursday night, with 11 touches and five clearances.

“That's what they're paid to do,” Lyon said.

“You expect your good players and leaders to stand up. And those guys did that. I thought after half-time, HIll, [Danyle]Pearce and [Lachie] Neale doubled or tripled their possessions and lifted.

“I don't think we got the rub of the green in some areas tonight. I don't think much went in our favour in our forward 50 metres, and a bit went in their favour in theirs.

“But that's been happening for a while now, so we sort of get used to it.”

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