Coach points finger at midfield

CARLTON coach Mick Malthouse believes his team will have to significantly improve its midfield and forward line if it wants to build on its semi-final effort next season.

The former premiership coach at Collingwood and West Coast said he had been stunned by the lack of midfield depth at the Blues in his first year at the helm.

"We just haven't got the numbers to go through the middle," Malthouse (pictured) said. "There's no one in the reserves that hasn't been tried.

"We've been able to win games by having less possessions than our opposition on numerous occasions."

Carlton averaged 339 disposals a game in season 2013, the ninth-best in the league. It was smashed in that area by Sydney in Saturday night's 24-point loss, to the tune of 442 to 345.

Malthouse said he would be looking at all potential free agent opportunities, starting with Collingwood's Dale Thomas.

He admitted however the Blues can not expect to improve overnight.

"You can't click your fingers and all of a sudden you have got five midfielders. It doesn't happen like that," Malthouse said.

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