Big changes are making Lachie Neale even better than before, the Bombers have ordered another review
Brisbane coach Chris Fagan believes Lachi Neil is playing better football than his Brownlow medal season, largely because of his improved offensive output.
Nile was the fugitive winner of the game's most prestigious personal honor in 2020 and is back in outstanding form throughout the first half of this season.
The 29-year-old midfielder averaged 32.1 settlements and nearly one goal per game, playing with 39 touchdowns and two heads in the Lions' win over GWS last week.
Neil is second only to Clayton Oliver of Melbourne in the AFL Coaches Association Player of the Year award and is vying for a second Brownlow win.
"That year (2020) was a very special year for him so it would be hard to get over it, but I think he's even more dangerous these days," Fagan told Fox Foote.
“He’s hitting the scoreboard a bit on his own and getting a little more involved in helping the score.
"I always think the great players in the game do a lot of damage to the front half of the field and Lachi certainly starts to do some of it."
Neil's form was crucial to Brisbane's second-place finish before clashing with third-placed Fremantle at the Optus Stadium on Sunday.
Fagan, meanwhile, has been embroiled in controversy over his decision not to award a 50m penalty against Chad Warner during Sydney's narrow victory over Richmond on Friday night.
Just before the final siren sounded at the SCG, Tiger Dion Prestia was awarded a free kick about 70 meters from goal.
Warner picked up the ball after sounding the siren without hearing a free kick whistle and booted into the crowd.
This led to an appeal for a 50m penalty from Richmond players that kept Prestia within scoring limits.
But the umpires rejected their appeal and Sydney won by six points.
"I was just happy that 50m was not fined in that instance," Fagan said.
"It simply came to our notice then.
"Technically it might be there but I think common sense prevailed and I'm glad it did."
The bombers ordered another review
Ascendon president Paul Brasher has announced a full-scale review of the AFL club's football activities and apologized to members for not informing chief executive Javier Campbell about the extension of his contract.
An intense spotlight has hovered over the Bombers throughout a horrific season of 2022, leaving them 16th on the ladder with just two wins at Halfway Point.
This has led to sharp criticism of the club's classification, including that of CEO Campbell, coach Ben Rutten and recruiting boss Adrian Dodoro.
A poor performance playing group has also come under fire for taking a dramatic dive after playing in the final last season.
In a video message to club members released Monday, Brasher announced that football director Shawn Wellman is overseeing the review on behalf of the board.
Wellman, a Bombers 2000 Premiership defender, will be assisted by club great Kevin Shady and Simon Madden.
"We're keeping an eye on every element of the football program," Brasher said.
"The actions taken out of this review may be incremental in terms of additional resources rather than transformative."
Brasher says the main focus areas of the review will be support for player development, coaching and coaching groups, and recruitment and list management.
“The field of hiring and list management is one that is going to be much more important this year because of our opportunities,” Brasher said.
"It's always important, but this year we have the potential to create a reasonably high draft pick, with room in our pay caps and the ability to go on trade deals, free agency and a real head of steam."
Brasher said Ascendon's tough draw and injury contributed to poor results this year and predicted "real improvement" in the second half of the season.
"But don't get me wrong, we're still in development, we're still working on something," he said.
"Again, I'll tell you that progress isn't going to be linear, but it's going to be there."
Campbell, who took over as CEO in 2014, has had his contract extended until the end of 2024 in recent weeks.
The bombers did not inform members of the new deal, news of which broke through the media earlier this month.
"I have had one or two people tell me that it was inappropriate to read about this in their paper before the club informed them and questioned whether we were trying to pull any kind of Swift," Brasher said.
The answer to the second question is absolutely no, but I must apologize that you did not hear it from us first.
"But on a truly fundamental question, the board has unanimously agreed to extend Xavier's contract because we believe he is the best person to provide us with the stability we need and to lead us through this next phase of our five-year strategic plan, including football. Success. "
Announced in December last year, the strategic plan set goals for each Essendon team - including both the AFL men's and women's teams - to win at least one Premiership by 2026.
Lucky mothers survived a heart attack
Great Peter Matera of the West Coast is lucky to have survived a serious heart attack while chopping wood at his home in Victoria.
Peter's brother Phil said the presence of Matara's wife, Suzy, who had raised concerns, was crucial to his survival.
"The doctor said he was lucky to have someone with him and they could take him straight to the hospital," Phil Matera told 7News.
"He was chopping wood and got some pain in his chest and luckily he didn't get out of the tractor as he usually does."