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Five talking points: Port Adelaide v Carlton

Kym Morgan  April 21, 2017 10:49 PM

Highlights: Port Adelaide v Carlton The Power and Blues clash in round five
AFL 2017 Round 05 - Port Adelaide v Cartlon

Jackson Trengove was part of Port's dominant ruck duo

1. Inaccuracy ruins the Robbie and Chad show
Port's two silkiest players Robbie Gray and Chad Wingard had the ball on a string in the third term and would have produced a memorable quarter had they had their kicking boots on. The pair kicked 2.6 between them during the term as Port ran rings around the Blues in one of the most one-sided quarters in general play you will ever see. The Power had 57 more disposals, won the contested possession by 24, had 22 more inside-50s and kicked 6.10 to nil. Gray continued his hot and cold season, ending with five goals in his second best afield effort of the year. In between, he has been quiet.

SHOWREEL: Watch Robbie's remarkable third quarter

2. Johnson joins exclusive-ish Port club
Speedster Aidyn Johnson became the 12th Power player to kick a goal with his first kick in AFL football on Friday against the Blues. It's actually quite a high number for a club in its 21st season in the national competition. The speedy forward got on the end of slick Power transition and then used his pace to burn off a chaser and goal. The 19-year-old might become a more important player at Alberton with his run and carry. Johnson was suspended for the Power's round one game this season for being in the passenger's seat when team-mate Jarman Impey crashed into four parked cars and fled the scene in December last year.

Click here for full match details and stats

3. Carlton doesn't have a top-tier player
This could change quickly. The Blues had seven teenagers in their side and no one doubts the promise of Patrick Cripps, Jacob Weitering and Jack Silvagni. In Cripps' case he's better than promising. Veterans Kade Simpson, Marc Murphy and Bryce Gibbs are quality players, but of the 22 that took to the field and were hammered against Port Adelaide not one is a genuine star right now.  The Blues might be the only club in the AFL devoid of a top-tier player and it showed as they ran around with little purpose and no spark.

4. Well balanced Power on track for finals?
Port's line-up looks as well balanced as it has in three seasons and appears well placed to make a push up the table over the next month. The Power's two losses have been respectable against flag favourites GWS and Adelaide, and they have impressed in three wins with an improved mix of hard inside football and smoother outside movement. Paddy Ryder and Jackson Trengove were a dominant ruck combination against Carlton, the half-back line is rebounding hard and the forward line led by Robbie Gray, Chad Wingard and Charlie Dixon looks dangerous. The Power have winnable games against the Brisbane Lions (away), West Coast (home) and Gold Coast (China) over the next three rounds. A 6-2 record is not beyond them.

5. Bolton set for scrutiny
Brendon Bolton was given some leeway early in his coaching career as he sought to rebuild a list that was in poor shape when he took it over ahead of the 2016 season. But he could be under the microscope this week after the issues with his team and its game plan were exposed on the big stage on Friday night. Media pundits, including Matthew Lloyd, were scathing of what he felt were overly defensive tactics against Port, which didn't give the young Blues side a chance to win the match. Carlton put numbers behind the ball through the contest and showed virtually no dare with ball in hand. They were quick to zone back all night. The ball came in slowly when it did go forward and the Carlton forwards kicked just two goals to three-quarter time, being held scoreless during the third term.