Costly lapses hurting Demons - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Costly lapses hurting Demons

By Sam Lienert 28/06/2008 10:05:48 AM Comments (0)

Melbourne utility Brad Green says the Demons must eradicate a habit of brief, but costly, lapses in AFL games if they are to have a chance of defeating Brisbane at the MCG on Sunday.

In their past two games, against Richmond and Sydney, the bottom-placed Demons have mostly matched their opposition, but had their chances killed off by bursts of opposition goals.

Against the Tigers it was an eight-goal blitz in the second term, while against the Swans last round it was a seven-goal opening quarter.

"There's been good aspects of our game and poor aspects," Green said.

"We're sort of playing two-and-a-half, three quarters of footy, but 20 minutes, half an hour is killing us in games where we've conceded quite a few goals.

"That's probably where we're at at the moment with a young side and not too much experience, it's hard to play four quarters of footy.

"But once we start playing four quarters we're certainly very competitive and we've been competitive in games, but just for not long enough."

The Demons are well aware that any let-off in intensity will prove extremely costly on Sunday, given the quality of the Lions' midfield, as well as their firepower up forward, with Daniel Bradshaw back from injury to join Jonathan Brown.

"No doubt when any team's got Jonathan Brown and Daniel Bradshaw in their side they pose a great threat," Green said.

"There's not only those guys, they've got an experienced midfield group in Simon Black, Luke Power, Tim Notting, these type of guys that have been round for years that are still going through there.

"Then they've got a settled backline, we're coming up against a decent side that's in great form and are playing great footy.

"So it's certainly going to be a tough match this week and we're going to have to play at our best for four quarters to be up there."

An already-inexperienced Melbourne side was made even more so for this clash, with veteran ruckman Jeff White dropped, while midfielder James McDonald was forced out with a groin injury.

Young defender James Frawley was also omitted, with debutant Stefan Martin one of the three inclusions, along with Shane Valenti and Simon Buckley.

Martin has been tipped for a possible job on Brown, although fellow youngsters Colin Garland and Matthew Warnock have regularly had jobs on big forwards this season, with their emergence one positive for the side.

"It's great experience for those guys to play on the best players week in, week out and no doubt they'll get those challenges for the rest of the year," Green said.

"It's just our job to make it a bit easier for them, but when the ball does come down one-on-one they're certainly holding their heads up high and doing very well."

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