Primus defends culture, Laidley - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Primus defends culture, Laidley

Steve Larkin 05/05/2011 05:41:16 PM Comments (0)

Port Adelaide coach Matthew Primus has defended his AFL club's culture and the part-time appointment of assistant Dean Laidley.

Primus, on the eve of a home clash with Hawthorn, said Port's club culture was "fantastic" but conceded there were problems within the playing group.

"When we talk about the culture, the culture of this club is fantastic," Primus said on Thursday.

"It has great history, it has got great people that work here, our supporters, our sponsors, the fabric of the club is no worries at all.

"We are talking about the culture of our playing group being able to play, like a lot of teams, competitive consistent football week in, week out.

"We need to keep working on it ... that is what we're talking about, not the culture of the Port Adelaide Football Club."

Assistant coach Laidley has been critical of Port's culture, with the former Kangaroos coach himself under scrutiny for splitting his time between Melbourne and Adelaide.

The time sharing agreement was "not ideal", Primus said.

"We were well aware of how it was going to work way back in October when we went through the process," he said.

"It is not ideal.

"But he's a great support for all the coaches and is a great learner and teacher for our young players.

"He does a huge amount of work.

"He has copped a bit of criticism for being part-time here but he's certainly imparted a lot of knowledge onto our players.

"He is an emotional character and wants to make this club a better club."

Port enter their AAMI Stadium match against the Hawks with just one win for the season and Primus searching for a competitive team.

"We have got a huge core group of players between the ages of 18 to 25 that haven't played enough footy together but we believe have a lot of talent and we need to get games into them.

"We are going to make a huge focus now of just trying to take the game on ... and get some ball movement going."

Port made five changes for Friday night's clash at AAMI Stadium, dropping veteran Chad Cornes and Jacob Surjan but regaining star young midfielder Travis Boak.

Hawthorn will miss Cyril Rioli (hamstring) and have handed debuts to Isaac Smith and Paul Puopolo.

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