Lions boss defends under-fire Leppitsch

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Lions boss defends under-fire Leppitsch

Brisbane chief executive Greg Swann has denied any suggestion the struggling AFL club have an issue with coach Justin Leppitsch’s temper.

Leppitsch has come under fire after reacting angrily to rumours of a player revolt at the Lions during a press conference last week.

Leppitsch labelled the rumours “crap”, “lies” and a “bunch of bulls**t” as the pressure continues to mount on the former Lions premiership star.

Last weekend’s loss to Greater Western Sydney was a club-record equalling 12th in a row and leaves the Lions with just one win from 16 matches this season.

Swann however says any suggestion Leppitsch’s outburst was reflective of a temper problem was rubbish.

“He’s very measured – that stems from one minor blow up at a press conference,” Swann told Brisbane’s Triple M radio.

“Every coach in the world has had a minor blow up at a press conference but from the playing group’s point of view there’s certainly no bad tempers.”

Swann has also hit out at the suggestion captain Tom Rockliff is agitating to be released from the Lions.

Rockliff has a year to run on his contract but has been linked to moves to several clubs including St Kilda and Adelaide after negotiations with the Lions reportedly stalled.

But the Lions’ boss says talks were simply put on hold when Rockliff was injured earlier in the season and he’s confident they’ll resume later in the year.

“Probably later this year we might have a talk about it,” he said.

“But he’s contracted for next year so there’s no real stress from anybody to be honest.”

Swann says the rumours and reports are part of the deal when you’re struggling but has urged fans to maintain faith in the club’s direction.

“When you’re one and 15, that’s your lot in life. It’s a results business so everybody cues up to whack you,” he said.

“The topics that they’ve hit on, dissension in the ranks and all that sort of stuff. It’s certainly not there that I can see.

“You can see that in a couple of years time they’re going to be super players these kids but at the moment we’re in that growing pains phase. It’s pretty tough but there are green shoots there for us.”

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