Lions preparing to end Tigers hoodoo - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lions preparing to end Tigers hoodoo

By Laine Clark 04/05/2009 06:54:01 PM Comments (0)

The prospect of facing Richmond at the MCG this weekend brings a smile to Brisbane Lions coach Michael Voss' face - it shouldn't.

The Lions have not won an away game since round eight, 2008.

And their record against the Tigers is even more damning.

Remarkably, Brisbane have not defeated Richmond since round 14, 2004 - although they did draw with the Tigers in 2007.

That record does not look like changing any time soon with Richmond expected to welcome back Ben Cousins from injury at the MCG on Saturday.

But Voss can't hide his excitement ahead of what he believes is a crunch clash for his rebuilding Lions.

The Lions king reckons he feels like he "belongs" at the MCG.

"Finals are played there and grand finals are played there, there's that tradition - when you go to the MCG it's hard not to feel like you belong there," Voss gushed.

Lifting not one but three premiership trophies at the traditional AFL home may also have something to do with it for Voss.

Now Voss is trying to figure out how to get his young team to make themselves feel at home at the "G" - or anywhere else besides the Gabba for that matter.

"We need to be able to show that we can back up our performance," Voss said after the Lions' 43-point Gabba win over Essendon last Saturday night.

"You can't keep going win-loss. We need to have two wins in a row to be able to get on the right path for the season.

"We go down to Melbourne - haven't won there for a while.

"We play Richmond - haven't beaten them for a while.

"So we have a nice little challenge on our hands this week."

But Voss is the first to admit he is still scratching his head over their away results - or lack thereof.

"Eventually we have to put our hand up and say `hey, we've got to do something about it (away record)' because this can't keeping going on," Voss said.

"Teams are becoming so good at travelling because you have to now.

"And with two more teams coming in you are going to travel even more - it's a critical factor we have to get right."

As if Voss didn't have enough to worry about, he expected Cousins to return after the Brownlow Medallist successfully returned from injury in the VFL last weekend.

"If he's got through unscathed you would presume he plays seniors," Voss said.

"He's another player who can find the football and lift them as a team.

"He can be very, very important to them. We've got to treat him with the normal respect that we would for any player of that calibre who comes in."

Meanwhile, Voss said they were monitoring fullback Daniel Merrett but expected to usher small forward Rhan Hooper - out for a month with an ankle complaint - back via the reserves this weekend.

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