MELBOURNE may be an astonishing eight and zip, but there's one statistic worrying coach Simon Goodwin.
The Dees controlled the general play around the ground in their nine-point win over Sydney on Saturday night, but lost the centre clearances comprehensively, 17 to four.
"It's concerning, isn't it, 17-4? It's probably as big a number as you've seen in footy," Goodwin said.
"That means you're sucking up a lot of territory, so it's an area of our game we have to get better. We'll look at that, learn and get better, but it's important to get that right, you give up a lot of territory and have to move the ball from your back half, and that's not how we want to play.
"We tried a number of different things and it didn't work for us. We've got a number of leaders in there, I know 'Gawny' (skipper Max Gawn) will go away and have a really good look at it, along with our midfield coach 'Ooze' (Adem Yze), some senior guys, go away and rectify it.
"It's an area we have to get better at. It's a big part of our game and lot of teams' games, so we have to get better at it."
Goodwin played down a collision involving superstar Christian Petracca on the final siren, from which the Dee pulled up noticeably sore.
"I wish the siren had have gone two seconds earlier. He'll be fine, he's just got a corkie," Goodwin said.
"We'll obviously ice that, look after him in the early part of the week and look forward to Carlton."
Sydney coach John Longmire was proud of his side's determination in the face of two top-tier opponents over the past fortnight, knocking off Geelong in a come-from-behind win and just falling short against the Dees.
"Ultimately, we're here to win, and regardless of who we're playing, we want to get the points, but we had a crack. If we had a bit more polish in our front half, maybe we might have been able to get over the line," Longmire said.
DEMONS v SWANS Full match coverage and stats
"I thought our boys had a real crack, and they didn't at any stage stop, they kept coming and coming and coming.
"If we look at the second half – we went in at half-time and they'd clearly had a better quarter than us – but then we got going again and we had a real crack in that second half, got to the stage where it gave us a chance to win, and we genuinely thought we were in with a real chance there in the end.
"To their credit, they're clearly the best side in it at the moment, so they found a way at the right time and that's what the difference was."
Longmire said the wet weather provided an extra test against the ladder-leading Dees.
"I thought it was a high-pressure game, and the conditions lent themselves to that as well. If you look at the pressure from both teams it was pretty much through the roof, so there was a lot of pressure in slippery, wet conditions," he said.
"We won three quarters of the inside-50 count. They were more efficient and effective going forward and the probably out-scrambled us in the second quarter."