Ahead of a Round 18 clash with North Melbourne, senior coach John Longmire appeared in front of the press. He announced the return of captain Callum Mills to senior footy and discussed the Round 17 loss against St Kilda.

On challenging Isaac Heeney decision

“We will…. I’m not going to go into all the detail about it because we'll let that unfold tonight, but the main point is, from our perspective, it wasn't intentional, there was no malice involved, and that's what we'll be arguing."

On Round 17 against St Kilda

“We’ve had probably on average, the last two weeks, six more scoring shots than our opposition but we haven't hit the scoreboard like the opposition have. Certainly, upon review, there's still some elements that we need to sharpen up on. I mean, 40 tackles very rarely gets it done in a game of football, and our pressure around the footy hasn't been up to standard, and we need to get back to applying an enormous amount of heat around the ball.”


On why the pressure has dropped

“Well, it's probably a combination of reasons. Regardless of what it is, you've got to get it done. It is what the game demands. It's not just what the coach demands. You need to apply an enormous amount of pressure on and around the footy, and when we're doing that usually good things happen."

On Logan McDonald

“I was glad he took the shot."

"In the end, back yourself in. You'll feel good about yourself and you'll get it at some point, but what you definitely don’t want to do is if you don't have a crack, you don't have a chance of scoring the shot. So from that perspective, I was glad he had it."

On Callum Mills’ return to play

“Callum Mills will definitely play senior footy this week. We sat down worked out a six-week plan to get him up to what he needed to do in a football training sense, and he's been doing that. He was also running well before that. Regardless of what happens at the tribunal, Mills will come back in. He's done a power of work.

“Two of our captains from last year haven't played a game yet. That's brought opportunities to the rest of our playing group. We think we've, in general, stood up pretty well in that regard without those guys playing a big role.”

On North Melbourne 

“I think they've been tracking the right way. I was down and watched them a few weeks ago when they played Collingwood, and they just got rolled at the very end, but their first quarter and a half is as good a footy as any team's played, and that was against last year's premier. They've got young players with great belief. It'll be a tough game, so we need to play well. We need to bring our pressure.”

On learnings for this week

On the weekend we got 30-odd points up halfway through the third. We've got to make sure we keep that pressure on, and what's got us to that point in the second quarter, and certainly at the start of the third, was a bit more pressure around the footy.”

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