Patrick Dangerfield.
Patrick Dangerfield. Quinn Rooney

Geelong coach Scott playing Cat and mouse

AFL: Geelong coach Chris Scott is keeping his cards close to his chest in regards to just where Patrick Dangerfield will start in Friday night's preliminary final against Adelaide.

The Cats' superstar returns to face his old Crows teammates when they clash at the Adelaide Oval for a place in the grand final against either GWS or Richmond.

Asked why it was not obvious that Dangerfield (pictured) would start forward after his four-goal performance against Sydney, Scott replied: "Because he is the best midfielder in the competition”.

"It is a compelling argument ... if he played as a deep forward he might be close to the best deep forward in the competition.

"It depends a little on the opposition and the way they set up. We rarely do things to make it destabilising for the opposition.

"But if that's a flow-on effect it helps our decision making. The part is the most important is not where he stars, it's adjusting to the way the game is played.

"If the game is not on our terms we need to change things to get it back that way.”

While Dangerfield's good friend Rory Sloane will be a huge 'in' for the hosts, Nakia Cockatoo is still a chance of a shock recall to the Cats' line-up. The explosive midfielder has played only one game since round 13, when delivering a three-goal display against Carlton but again hurt his hamstring.

But he has been in full training for two weeks and while Cam Guthrie (calf) will not play, the Cats will consider throwing Cockatoo into the fray. The Cats love Cockatoo's fierce tackling and aggression.

"He will be in the squad, (but) I am not prepared to elaborate any more than that,” Scott said on Cockatoo.

Tom Stewart will take the field after being rested in the last quarter of the win over Sydney with a tight hamstring.

Scott said Tom Lonergan's sickness was not related to food poisoning or a dodgy sausage roll but he had fully recovered.

Small forward and crowd favourite Eddie Betts

predicted the home-ground advantage would be stronger than ever, with a bumper crowd expected.

He suggested the louder the crowd the better it would be for the Crows.

"It's going to be massive,” Betts said on radio FIVEaa. "Every game that we've played when it's not a packed house and the crowd goes crazy, it gets us going.

"So with a full house, all Crows supporters, it will be unbelievable. Especially to hear them cheer us on and when I go near the ball they chant my name and it gets me going as well.”

with Jesper Fjeldstad



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