Stick to the system, urges Swans coach

Sydney coach John Longmire says his players must stick to their system to topple favourites Geelong in the AFL grand final.

Sydney Swans AFL coach JOHN LONGMIRE speaks to the media during a press conference at SCG in Sydney, Australia.
Sydney Swans AFL coach JOHN LONGMIRE speaks to the media during a press conference at SCG in Sydney, Australia. Picture: Matt King/Getty Images

Sydney coach John Longmire is imploring his players to believe in their system after dumping young forward Logan McDonald for the AFL grand final against Geelong.

Longmire axed the 20-year-old McDonald, recalling Hayden McLean, who hasn't featured in AFL ranks since round eight.

"It's tough for Logan," Longmire said.

"It's tough to go out of the team at any time but particularly for a grand final."

Longmire said stalwart Sam Reid and winger Justin McInerney proved their fitness at Thursday training.

Reid, with Luke Parker the only players remaining from Sydney's 2012 flag-winning team, was substituted out of the preliminary final because of a groin injury while McInerney suffered a sprained ankle.

Geelong named an unchanged side, including Max Holmes despite the wingman being subbed out of their preliminary final due to a hamstring injury.

The Cats, on a 15-game winning streak, enter the MCG finale as warm favourites.

But Longmire said his Swans, who have won their past nine games in a row, must believe in their system to cause an upset.

"Just believe in what you do, the system," Longmire said of the message to his players.

"It's about turning up and about execution on game day.

"Don't use your energy up too early, save your energy for game day, and turn up and do what you do.

"They (Geelong) finished two games (wins) clear at the end of the home-and-away season and had a great win last week so they are clearly a very strong team.

"They have been fantastic this year but we look forward to that challenge."

"It is a big game and we just have to make sure we back in what we do."

Both clubs featured in the grand final parade on Friday, with the latest edition of the fanfare differing markedly from the past.

Instead of travelling in slow-moving open-top cars through Melbourne's central business district, players and coaches from both clubs paraded along the Yarra River in a cavalcade of boats.

They were then driven through Birrarung Marr to greet fans at Yarra Park, outside the MCG.