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Leppitsch in no rush at Lions

By Laine Clark 19/08/2009 08:03:43 PM Comments (0)

Two ex-teammates may have snapped up AFL head coaching jobs but Brisbane Lions assistant Justin Leppitsch says he is in no rush to do the same.

Leppitsch would make a welcome change if ever handed the senior reins, however, judging by his frank assessment ahead of the Lions' crunch Saturday night clash with Port Adelaide at the Gabba.

He pulled no punches, saying his team were "soft" in their last game with Port, admitted some Lions would battle to overcome nerves ahead of a rare finals campaign and conceded a top four finish was "pie in the sky".

Leppitsch was full of praise for Brad Scott after his ex-teammate was unveiled as the next North Melbourne coach.

Scott is the second player from the Lions' dominant years to be named a senior coach, following the return of Brisbane prodigal son Michael Voss.

And there is every sign the trend will continue - apart from Leppitsch, Craig McRae, Scott's brother Chris and Nigel Lappin are also serving AFL coaching apprenticeships.

It is believed Leppitsch had an interview with Richmond last month.

But Leppitsch reckons he is not going anywhere soon.

"I am not in any rush to be a senior coach. I would like to do that one day, no doubt about that," he said in Brisbane on Wednesday.

"You have to find a club that fits your personality.

"They (Scott and North) reckon they have found the perfect fit.

"At this point in my career I haven't found that yet."

The Lions are facing Port for the first time since their round 14, 48-point loss in Adelaide.

In a turning point in that match, Lions dangerman Jared Brennan lost the plot after constant Josh Carr niggling and headbutted his opponent.

"It wasn't just him (Brennan to blame), we didn't react in a lot of pressure circumstances," Leppitsch said.

"That was a glaring one ... but there were a lot (of incidents) that went unnoticed that we felt we didn't have the right composure or commitment in.

"A lot of the review of our opposition (on Wednesday) was done on our previous game.

"We just felt we were probably a bit soft."

Leppitsch also admitted some Lions players would need to overcome "natural demons" ahead of the club's first finals campaign since 2004.

"There are only 10 players who have played finals football (at the Lions) - 37 on our list haven't experienced it," he said.

"It is very hard to stay composed when you have never experienced a finals campaign before so a lot of players will be nervous - we won't be able to help that.

"We will try as best we can by reassuring them, but they are going to have their natural demons coming into a finals series even a couple of weeks out knowing that they are going to play in September."

On a top four finish, Leppitsch said: "That's pie in the sky, I think.

"That loss (against Western Bulldogs) last weekend really put that thought to bed."

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