Lions look to crash Swans party - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lions look to crash Swans party

By Laine Clark 25/08/2009 06:55:59 PM Comments (0)

Call them party poopers or just plain mean, but the Brisbane Lions hope Sydney's emotional farewell to Swans greats Michael O'Loughlin, Leo Barry and Jared Crouch on Saturday night is a real fizzer.

Sure, Lions captain Jonathan Brown has plenty of respect for the retiring trio but he has no time for sentiment as Brisbane look to secure a prized home AFL final.

Victory will ensure the Lions host the loser of Saturday's Carlton-Adelaide Etihad Stadium showdown in the first week of finals.

But a loss will mean the Lions face a daunting away trip against the victor of the Carlton-Adelaide clash.

"Sydney can't make the finals but they have a few of their greats retiring so there will be a lot of emotion for those guys - they will be ready to go," Brown said in Brisbane on Monday.

"But we have a big carrot dangling at the end as well - that's trying to achieve a home final.

"We have to put the acid on them early."

Easier said than done - the Lions have not beaten the Swans in Sydney since the 2003 preliminary final.

However, Brisbane have made a habit of breaking hoodoos in 2009 - as indicated by their first win in five years over the Swans at the Gabba in round three.

"We have overcome a lot of challenges this year that's for sure, and this is a big one," Brown said.

Much-needed momentum for the Swans game was provided by their last round heroics in which they turned an early 47-point deficit into a stunning 15-point win over Port Adelaide at the Gabba.

"Hopefully that (comeback) gives us a kick on because we were really looking for something like that," Brown said.

"Spirits are high coming off the win and we need that coming into this game - we need a bit of momentum coming into finals.

"We want to go as far as we can (in the finals).

"We don't want to just dip our toes back in it, we want to get back into it full on so it's exciting.

"I know I've got a spring in my step. This is what you play footy for."

The Lions will be sweating on the fitness of Jed Adcock (knee) ahead of a looming midfield battle with the Swans on the SCG.

"It's a smaller ground so clearances are a massive factor in the game," Lions vice-captain Simon Black said.

"You get the ball from congestion and you're not far from a scoring opportunity."

Adcock was initially ruled out for the season when he went down against Geelong but looks set to cap a remarkable comeback barely eight weeks later.

"It would be a great lift having Jed back," Black said.

Fullback Daniel Merrett (hamstring) will be monitored but Brown insists he suffered no ill effects after being "cleaned out" in a mid-air collision with teammate Daniel Bradshaw against Port.

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