WEST Coast captain Luke Shuey says his side was "embarrassed" by its 63-point Good Friday loss to Sydney and the Eagles are looking for redemption when they travel to face winless Port Adelaide on Saturday.
Shuey was among several star Eagles to return for Friday's defeat, along with Elliot Yeo, Tim Kelly and Jamie Cripps, yet the home side was blown away in a lopsided first half where Sydney opened up a 58-point lead with 20 scoring shots to two.
West Coast was riding a high coming into the game after a famous round four win over Collingwood with a depleted side and was expected to challenge Sydney, given the Eagles' list of inclusions.
"We've spoken this week that once you step across the white line there's no excuse for poor performance," Shuey said.
"We've been really disappointed with what we dished up. We're embarrassed. We feel bad for the thousands of people that came out to watch us play on Friday night and all around the state. Our supporter base deserved to see a better outing than that. That was disappointing.
"But on the other side of that, Sydney were exceptional, their ability to be connected on field and execute all game. We've learned a few lessons out of it.
"That's obviously the benchmark of where we want to get to, them and Melbourne and Brisbane are the teams we're all striving to be like. It was a good wake-up call. It was good to see first-hand what the best sides are doing."
The Eagles and the Power are both struggling this season, sitting 16th and 18th with 1-4 and 0-5 records respectively.
"We're really excited to put in a strong performance after last week," Shuey said. "Sometimes you want the weekend to roll around as quick as possible so you can try and get out there and redeem yourself."
West Coast has won its past five trips to face the Power in Adelaide dating back to 2013, including when Shuey kicked a match-winner after the siren in the 2017 elimination final. Jeremy McGovern, who is still in some doubt for Saturday's game as he is due out of health and safety protocols later in the week, also achieved the same feat in 2018.
Shuey shrugged off that historical superiority, bringing the focus back to West Coast developing synergy after an interrupted start to the season, due to a raft of injuries and players entering protocols.
The Eagles skipper cited the fact his side has used 40 players already this season, with only three playing all five games.
The decision to bring all of Shuey, Yeo and Kelly back at the same time has sparked some debate, but that combined with the absence of Therabody AFL All-Australian ruckman Nic Naitanui, means the Eagles have a new-look on-ball group which urgently needs to find a way to function given their 1-4 record.
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"I think we're searching for synergy as a group to be honest," he said. "I don’t think too many blokes have actually played with each other this year out of the 40 players."
On the ruck connection, Shuey said: "We're working on that stuff all summer, we don’t just work with Nic, we work with all of the rucks. Obviously now we don’t have a choice but to work with the other boys. We get to work and see if we can form a good relationship on field for the next 10 or so weeks."
Shuey, who played managed minutes on Friday, was also craving continuity on an individual front by stringing a run of games together, having only managed 22 since the end of the 2019 season, largely due to soft-tissue injuries.
"(My goal is) One, to get the body right but, two, to get up to speed on my match fitness as well," Shuey said.
"I need a bit of continuity for me but it's symbolic for us as a club as well to be able to field the same 22 or 23 every week for a couple of weeks in a row would be nice. Fingers crossed we have a little bit of luck on that front and guys can start to string a few games together."