Josh Carr is keen to unleash his midfield in this Friday evening's match simulation. Image: AFL Photos.

PORT ADELAIDE assistant coach Josh Carr is eagerly anticipating Friday evening’s match simulation session with the Adelaide Crows, to put some of what his side has been working on to the test against real opposition.

The Power will face the Crows at Alberton Oval from 5pm on Friday in the first hit-out of the year against AFL opponents.

While the sides are likely to rotate heavily in a game played over six periods, and it is not an official game, Carr is hoping the contest will be a good measuring stick leading into the season proper.

Port Adelaide will get to put their pre-season work on display in a match simulation against Adelaide on Friday. Image: Brandon Hancock.

Speaking on Wednesday after the side’s last training session for the week, Carr also discussed some selection considerations for Friday, Hugh Jackson’s hip surgery and the battle for the wing position.

Josh Carr on how the group will approach Friday night’s hit-out with the Crows:

“I don't think we have to pull them back. I think it's what we focus on. From our point of view, as coaches, it's feedback for us over the pre-season. We get to train and go up against each other but really, you're only measuring yourself up against yourself so we get an opportunity to get a really good opposition and find out a little bit about ourselves as we prepare for round one.”

Josh Carr on Willem Drew’s shoulder injury and Todd Marshall’s foot injury:

“No, (Willem) won't play this week but it's an AC joint (injury) that sort of hung around a little bit. If this was in-season he’d play. He won't play this way. We're just trying to get him right.

“Todd’s unlikely with the foot. We think it's just a week, so he’ll be right for Freo next week.”

Forward Todd Marshall is unlikely to feature in Port Adelaide's match simulation against Adelaide. Image: Brandon Hancock.

 Josh Carr on midfielder Hugh Jackson having hip surgery this week:

“He needed a bit of a clean out, he's had a little bit of trouble with that hip over the last probably month to probably before Christmas. So, they went and had a look and there was a bit of work to be done to clean it out and it'll be a few months.

“He had a really positive year last year and finished off the year strongly and his name was thrown out a few times (for selection) so he'd be disappointed. But at the same time, he's got to use his time to still work on things like his body strength in the gym and getting a bit stronger so it's an opportunity for him at the same time.

Josh Carr on the wing position and whether one of the wing positions is Jase Burgoyne’s to lose:

“I don’t know if I look at it that way, it's definitely open. He's had a really strong pre-season on the wing and played well in the game last week. He's just going to keep performing and playing well. They’re the conversations that we have as coaches. We've got a pretty fit back 15 so yeah, there's a fair chance that someone will get an opportunity to move up the ground.

“(Travis) Boaky’s had a strong pre-season playing on the wing. You know, that's probably his position now, with the guys that we've got inside. The great thing about Boaky on the wings is his leadership. He’s able to talk to the guys inside, but at the same time, in games, if we do need something different, we know that he's been a very good mid for us for a long period of time.”

Young gun Jase Burgoyne has had a strong pre-season, pushing for Round 1 selection. Image: Matt Sampson.

Josh Carr on Ollie Wines having a full pre-season:

“I think this time last year, he'd had one week of proper running leading into these games, and we used the games as pre-season, so he was always chasing his tail. As the season started, and being a little bit behind, that probably affected his confidence a little bit through the year, where this year he's been able to get that pre-season work into him, build that confidence back in his body that he's got the agility to burst out of stoppage and get his strengths back into his game, which we've been able to see over the pre-season.

“There's definitely a lot of hope (that he’ll be back to his best). I guess, it's not hard because we're seeing him in action at training, so there’s a lot of confidence in Ollie and in his body that he's going to be able to play really good football for us.”

With a full pre-season under his belt, Ollie Wines enters the 2024 season fully fit and firing. Image: AFL Photos.

Josh Carr on the midfield group at his disposal this year:

“I'm pretty lucky and we as a footy club are lucky to have the talent, we talk about the trio (Zak Butters, Connor Rozee and Jason Horne-Francis) but throw in (Willem) Drewy into that mix, you know he’s not as pretty, I guess, but he gets the job done. And then Ollie as well, so there's a nice variety of players that we get to coach and get to work with and get to throw something different out.”

Josh Carr on his decision last year to remain at Alberton instead of chasing senior coaching job elsewhere: 

“I've made a really big move, I guess to begin with - one going over to Perth, and then coming back. And I have four kids that are at school and I guess the whole thought process going into doing that again to my young family, I just felt I was in a really good position right now. I'm at Port and I'm really happy. I guess the conversation sitting down with Ken and the footy club about preparing for my future and just making sure that I'm doing the right thing. And I felt you got to have a balance with family and football, and I thought the right balance is to stay here.

“I'm happy to, I guess remain patient. I think you have to as a coach, I think that just gives you opportunity. As coaches, you're always improving and it doesn't matter if you're the senior coach or an assistant coach, I think you’ve got to use every opportunity to get better. And I'm doing that. As I've said before, if the opportunity comes up at the right time, then I'll be ready for it. But I'm very committed to staying at Port Adelaide.”