Sport AFL has never been so even for Lions coach

08:32  23 july  2021
08:32  23 july  2021 Source:   aap.com.au

Losing Lions got more out of match than South Africa - Gatland

  Losing Lions got more out of match than South Africa - Gatland British and Irish Lions coach Warren Gatland said his players were "pretty bullish" despite losing 17-13 by South Africa A at the Cape Town Stadium on Wednesday. "The players were pretty bullish in the changing room.""I thought we got more out of tonight than South Africa," said Gatland. "The players were pretty bullish in the changing room.

New head coach Chris Fagan and recently appointed football manager David Noble were unveiled to the media for the first time on Tuesday and were upbeat about the prospects of their new club. After Justin Leppitsch managed 14 wins in his three seasons before being sacked last month, Fagan and Noble weren't about to set expectations too high, but were adamant He has a close relationship with Noble – they coached against each other in the TAC Cup during the mid 1990s – a fact Fagan believes will help them transition quickly ahead of the upcoming NAB AFL Draft Combine and Trade Periods.

AFL : Lachie Neale’s resilience impresses Lions coach Chris Fagan. Neale has missed six of Brisbane’s 17 matches this season because of ankle and calf injuries. He also partially dislocated a shoulder in the Lions ’ win over Geelong last month and seemed to reaggravate the problem at training this week. However, the former Fremantle star has been named in the Lions line-up for this weekend’s battle with the Gold Coast Suns, with Fagan confident Neale will play a key role in Brisbane’s bid to avoid a third successive defeat.

Brisbane coach Chris Fagan has labelled the AFL the most even he's ever seen heading into Saturday's derby with Gold Coast.

a close up of a man: Brisbane Lions coach Chris Fagan says he's never seen an even AFL competition like this year. © Jason O'BRIEN/AAP PHOTOS Brisbane Lions coach Chris Fagan says he's never seen an even AFL competition like this year.

The Lions are aiming to bounce back after consecutive defeats to St Kilda and Richmond put a dent in their top-four ambitions.

The visit of the Suns at the Gabba is far from a walk in the park however, with Stuart Dew's team having posted wins over the Tigers and GWS before a competitive display against the Western Bulldogs last weekend.

Fagan says those results and his team's recent setbacks just highlight how tight the whole AFL competition is in 2021.

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Victoria's ever-expanding number of Covid-19 exposure sites has AFL players and staff on edge, Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge says. A long list of players and club staff, including Bulldogs midfielder Josh Dunkley, have been forced into 14-day isolation periods after unwittingly There is no major impediment to a St Kilda-Carlton clash in Melbourne and Richmond have no qualms about spending next week under strict Western Australian quarantine rules in preparation for their clash with Fremantle. The Tigers are preparing to fly to Perth straight after this Sunday's heavyweight contest

It was the '80s — the hair was big, life was large, and Aussie Rules were dirty words in Queensland. A big grey koala wearing tight footy shorts lands on the Gold Coast to become the mascot for the state's first VFL team, the Brisbane Bears. "It was an adventure that had never been done before," AFL commentator Mark Maclure said. "I reckon it was gutsy to take on rugby league , rugby union — all those codes — and be successful, and that's the part I'm proud of more." Maclure was the assistant coach when the Bears played their first game in 1987. The Skase and Cronin dream.

"You're looking at it now and Collingwood are winning games, North Melbourne are winning games and so are Hawthorn and so are the Gold Coast Suns, it's a really even competition," the 60-year-old said.

"You tend to think that the top sides should win every week and the bottom sides should lose every week but that's not how the comp is.

Video: Lloyd highlights Lions' ruck problem (Wide World of Sports)

"I've never seen it more even.

"For us to go through a period after being one-and-three to win 10 and lose three I think that's pretty solid form and even in our losses we've been in those games up to our necks."

The Lions are enjoying a week of relative normality after a month of bouncing from state to state and venue to venue amid Australia's changing COVID landscape.

They also welcome back rugged midfielder Jarrod Berry in a boost to their injury-hit lineup as they chase a sixth-straight win over their Queensland rivals.

The Suns head up the M1 with injury concerns of their own with Nick Holman and Brandon Ellis both picking up injuries in the 11-point loss to the Bulldogs.

"They're improving and they have been improving for a few years now, it's just that sometimes it doesn't happen as quickly as what everyone thinks it should," Fagan said of the Suns.

"I have total respect for what Dewie and those guys are doing down there."

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