AFTER Fremantle lost to Gold Coast in round nine, coach Justin Longmuir made the observation that whenever the Suns lose "they cop it", and whenever they win the opposition is having a down day.

So it was one week later when Collingwood got the job done at Optus Stadium, with the Dockers coming under examination for a second straight loss in the wet and less attention given to the Magpies' excellent performance.

The Dockers do need to address how they handle slippery conditions, but it is also worth looking at the opposition and what they have confronted in the past two weeks to understand where they have come unstuck.

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When you do, a trend emerges in one key stat that Fremantle and its upcoming opponents would be well aware of. 

Fremantle players show their disappointment after losing to Collingwood in R10, 2022. Picture: Getty Images

Gold Coast and Collingwood have produced the two best pressure performances the Dockers have confronted this season, using Champion Data's pressure factor stat.

The indicator measures the amount of pressure points accrued by a team – through acts like chasing, corralling and tackling – for every chance they have to apply pressure.

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Collingwood's pressure factor against Fremantle on Sunday was 1.95, which ranked No.11 for all teams this season, and No.1 for the Magpies under new coach Craig McRae.

Midfielders Scott Pendlebury, Taylor Adams, Jack Crisp and Patrick Lipinski all produced pressure performances that ranked in the top 20 individual performances for the club this season. It's little wonder McRae spoke post-match of how proud he was of his team.

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By contrast, the Dockers had a pressure factor of 1.80, their second lowest result in a season that has been underpinned by excellent pressure performances, particularly in the front half.

As a result of the Collingwood’s pressure, Fremantle recorded a season-high 35 turnovers in its own defensive half, with many of those the result of poorly executed ball movement that didn't suit the conditions.

From rounds one to nine, Freo averaged just 20.7 defensive-half turnovers a game, ranked No.4 in the AFL, with careful ball-use out of the back half seen as a strength of the Dockers' game.

The other area where Fremantle fell short against Collingwood was in the effectiveness of its clearances (72.1 per cent), with the conditions likely playing a role in the drop off.  

Still, it's an area Longmuir was quick to identify post-match, noting improvement would come as players take opportunities to break out of stoppages rather than get caught up in handball chains that refer pressure to teammates.

Fremantle's Blake Acres under pressure against Gold Coast in R9, 2022. Picture: Getty Images

"When you’re sitting closer to the top, teams bring their best, and if you’re off in any part, you get what you deserve," Longmuir said post-match, describing the past fortnight as a reality check.

The Suns and Magpies have brought their best in back-to-back weeks, and matches now loom against Melbourne (MCG), Brisbane (Optus Stadium) and Hawthorn (Optus Stadium), with Carlton (Marvel Stadium) waiting after the bye.

Whether or not they have a wet weather issue, the past two weeks have at least shown the Dockers have a pressure issue when teams bring their best.

Reinstating their own pressure game and better handling what the opposition bring shape as the keys to emerging from the next month as a top-four team.