McPhee Freo’s Mr Fix-it
Adam McPhee credits the faith showed in him by senior coach Mark Harvey and playing a variety of team-orientated roles in recent weeks for helping recapture his best form.
The 27-year-old played one of his best games of the season in Saturday’s 19-point loss to Richmond, taking 13 strong marks and constantly backing into packs playing as a defender.
In round 13 he was a crucial contributor in Fremantle’s win over Carlton after negating Blues’ captain and midfield star Chris Judd in a run-with role.
McPhee said his confidence had grown after deciding to concentrate on playing a role for the team, rather than worrying about how he was playing.
“I think I’ve played my role each week and that’s the positive I’ve got out of it,” he said.
“It’s not about me, it’s about winning games.”
McPhee said he was just as comfortable playing down back as he was as a tagger, and was happy to do either if it was beneficial to the team.
“I’ve played a lot of football down back, and I think I can still play down there, but it’s all about the personnel as well,” he said.
“What’s more important is winning games, and if it means I have to play for forward for the sake of the team, then I will. If it means playing midfield or back, it’s the same thing.
“I’m not going to get focused in on what’s best for me. It’s what’s best for the team and winning games of football.”
McPhee said he was indebted to his coach, Harvey, who has given him time and opportunities to settle into the team after joining Fremantle from Essendon in December, 2009.
“Wanting to play well for Mark is something that’s in my mind,” McPhee said.
“He’s showed a lot of faith in me, and, in time, hopefully I can repay that.
“I’ll be endeavouring to make sure I work really hard on my own game, and use my knowledge and experience to help the young guys develop as well. Giving the young guys direction and support out on the ground is part of my role as well.”
McPhee said he still didn’t know what his role would be for Sunday’s crucial clash with Melbourne at Subiaco Oval, but he would welcome whatever challenge Harvey threw at him.
“If we do include (Chris) Tarrant and (Luke) McPharlin, my role might change, but I can’t predict that just yet,” he said.
“We will determine what personnel is going to be able to play this week for us. My role might be forward or back, but we’ll look more closely at that later on.”
McPhee said Melbourne, who are coming off a strong win over Essendon, would provide Fremantle with a difficult test on Sunday.
“They spread really well and are hard running,” he said.
“Their forward line has changed a little bit, adding (Colin) Sylvia back in. They looked desperate and they were pretty good in the midfield and they were able to get on top of Essendon, dominating out of the middle.
“We’ve got to focus on what we’ve got to do this week, and playing against Melbourne is our focus this week.”