West Adelaide is on a mission to ”regain respect” when the 2017 SANFL Macca’s League begins on April 7.
Premiership coach Mark Mickan, entering the final year of his contract, is well aware rebuilding confidence will be a critical plank in achieving this after last year’s sudden fall from grace.
Speaking on SANFL Radio, Mickan said the Bloods were better placed headed into this season with players such as Jason Porplyzia, Shannon Green and Brad Helbig enjoying more positive pre-season campaigns.
Together with their presence, Mickan is also encouraged with the continued improvement of players such as Nick Favretto and Brett Turner, who benefited from exposure in the Macca’s League last year.
West has focused on recruiting locally during summer, enticing several fringe players from rival SANFL clubs such as Nathan Batley (Woodville-West Torrens), Jacob Carger (Glenelg) and Norwood pair James Iannucci and Lachlan Peter.
The Bloods back half has also been bolstered by the inclusion of highly-rated VFL defender Jake Wilson and the return of Tom Keough after a year on the Gold Coast Suns list.
This was vital considering vice-captain Adam Hartlett, Ryan Willits and Justin Hardy have all departed City Mazda Stadium since the end of 2016.
After beating North by eight points on Friday night, West will play Central and Glenelg in trial matches before confronting South Adelaide in Round 1 at home on Friday April 7 at 7.10pm.