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Fagan: Teams win matches, squads win premierships

Michael Whiting, AFL.com.au  August 4, 2017 11:34 AM

Teams win matches, Squads win premierships Chris Fagan speaks to the media about our upcoming clash with the Bulldogs.

Dayne Zorko will return from suspension to play the Western Bulldogs on Saturday, as will rested teenagers Eric Hipwood, Hugh McCluggage and Jarrod Berry, along with defender Dan McStay from a shoulder injury.

The Lions gave the reigning premier a mighty scare in Round 5, leading by 32 points at half-time before running out of steam in the final quarter.

Senior Coach Chris Fagan said his team was "disappointed that day, but also very excited about the way we played".

Sitting in last place with four rounds remaining – a game plus percentage behind Carlton and North Melbourne – he said the goal for the final month was simple.

"We're just trying to do our best to win as many games as we can," he said.

"Where we finish on the ladder is where we finish on the ladder, but the important part is we finish on a strong note, regardless of the ladder positon.

"People say about the No.1 draft pick, but sometimes the No.2 draft pick is better than the No.1 draft pick, or the No.10 is better.

"We don't want to get caught up in that, it's not healthy to think that way.

"Our aim is to win as many games as we can this season and be able to say at the end that we've improved."

Tom Rockliff is playing sore, but Fagan has given no thought of resting his vice-captain in the final month of the season.

"I think a lot of players have got a little bit of pain at this time of year, we've been playing for five months," Fagan said.

"Tom obviously hurt his shoulder in the game in Tassie against Hawthorn, made a recovery from that, but it's still lurking around.

"Tom would be the first to come and put his hand up if he thought he wasn't right to go.

"If he wasn't right to be playing, we wouldn't be playing him.

"No excuses there."