Eagles temper expectations for inaugural season

WINS and losses won't define West Coast in its inaugural AFLW season.

Success for the expansion outfit will be defined in other ways, with senior coach Luke Dwyer wanting to see a willingness to challenge the opposition each and every week. 

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"Our expectations are that we want to prepare this group as best as possible," Dwyer told womens.afl.

"We're going in being really realistic about how good the competition is and where it's got to.

"We're looking at being consistent.

"We want to be competitive, but we're not going in with any wins or loss focus."

Luke Dwyer

"It's about the way we want to go about our football and certainly we feel like if we can come with a really competitive mindset, then we'll give ourselves a chance hopefully against most sides."

The Eagles are one of four new sides, along with Richmond, St Kilda and Gold Coast, that will be entering the competition in 2020.

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But while the Tigers and Saints have been able to gain continuity with a majority of their players playing together in the VFL, the Eagles had their players spread out across numerous WAFLW clubs during the winter.

The plus for the Eagles is they have been able to draw on several players from their women's academy, which Dwyer has worked closely with.

"That's been really pleasing," Dwyer said.

"I've been able to develop pretty positive relationships with some of those girls that we eventually picked up and signed through the expansion signings.

"Having a bit more of an understanding of the group on a personal level has been a positive because they effectively haven't played together yet because they've been with their own WAFLW clubs."

Dwyer has kept things pretty simple in the team's first pre-season, with an emphasis on fitness and skills.

"We're going in pretty eyes wide open," he said.

"We want the girls to focus on their conditioning and the demands of the game are telling us they need to be fit, playing 16-a-side and the last-touch rule.

"We are focusing on their skills with all the fundamentals incorporated into every session.

"We're giving them an opportunity to work on all different parts of their game without really over complicating things too much at the moment from a structure and overall game point of view."

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The Eagles will incorporate plenty of match simulation into training before facing Fremantle and Richmond in pre-season games.

They then kick-off the season proper away to Collingwood at Victoria Park on February 9, before hosting the Dockers in the first women's Western Derby at Optus Stadium on February 15.