AAP AFL

Blues coach shrugs off AFLW criticism

By AAP Newswire

Carlton coach Daniel Harford has brushed off renewed criticism of the AFLW's controversial conference system, saying could not give a "fat rat's".

The Blues will host Fremantle next weekend in a preliminary final and Adelaide will host Geelong in the other, with times and dates to be confirmed.

The top two teams from either conference progressed to the finals in the expanded women's league and the clear imbalance between the two groups has sparked the controversy.

Carlton topped Conference B with a 4-3 win-loss record and a percentage of 99.6.

Fourth-placed Melbourne in Conference A also were 4-3 and had a better percentage of 111.2.

The only Conference A team with a worse record than the Blues was last year's premiers the Western Bulldogs, who finished bottom of their pool on 2-5.

But Harford, who has taken the Blues from last to a finals berth in his first season as an AFLW senior coach, has scorned the commentary.

"I'm not too concerned about it ... I don't pay too much attention to it," he said.

"We just worry about the next game.

"I couldn't give a 'fat rat's' about what's happening outside of it."

Harford said everyone knew how it would work this season and it was up to teams to finish in the top two.

Third-placed North Melbourne and the Demons in Conference A clearly are the big losers.

"We have nothing to prove to the naysayers, we're a good-enough footy team to qualify for a finals campaign, that's the way the competition was set out," Harford said.

"No-one will give us a chance because we're Conference B and we're the losers - that's okay, that's fine.

"What I know is we're a pretty special group."

Also on Sunday, Collingwood ended Brisbane's finals hopes with a six-point home win, 3.7 (25) to 2.7 (19).

It also meant the Magpies avoided becoming the first team in the three-year AFLW to go through a season winless.