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Swans coach excited about future generation

Sydney Swans head coach John Longmire sees plenty of improvement in his side as the club prepares to face Carlton on Friday night.

The Swans are sitting fourth on ladder with seven wins from 10 games, having won their last three matches.

Speaking on Melbourne Breakfast, Longmire said it was pleasing to be able to play younger players while still being able to come away with a win.

“I think we’re going OK without setting the world on fire,” he said.

“We’re blooding some young players. We had four teenagers in our team over the weekend so that’s been exciting.

“Like most teams, we’re still working on our playing style but we need to get a bit better.”

21-year-old young gun Callum Mills broke his foot in a freak accident last week, with the Swans revealing the young gun tripped and fell while throwing an American Football after training last Thursday.

The 2012 Premiership coach said it took him by surprise when he was told about the nature of Mills’ injury.

“I was in (football operations manager) Tom Harley’s office and the physio came up and told me (about the injury),” he said.

“Naturally after the last training session of the week so you think the risks of the week are now finished and it’s about settling your team down.

“It was very, very disappointing. We’ll get over it but it was disappointing for (Callum) and for us.

“He’s a very good player and a quality youngster. We speak to our players and try and reduce those risks, no matter how small they can be.”

While the club is well positioned heading into the second half of the season, they’ve lost two of their last three matches at the SCG.

Longmire said it was a “fine line” after two close losses at home, having gone down to North Melbourne and Adelaide respectively by a combined margin of 12 points this year.

“No one is looking at the margin, it’s just a matter of if it’s a win or loss,” the Swans coach said.

“It’s just a couple of little things we got wrong at the critical moments we look back on but that’s just AFL footy.”

Looking ahead to Friday night’s matchup against the Blues, Longmire singled out big-bodied Carlton midfielder Patrick Cripps as one they’d try and look to nullify.

“He’s taller than I am,” he said of the 194cm 23-year-old.

“In my era (of playing), we were key forwards and he’s a midfielder. He’s such a big body and so good at the same time.

“Josh Kennedy and Luke Parker are pretty strong and they’ll have to be at their best along with (George) Hewett in order to combat him.

“(Matthew) Kreuzer’s playing well and if he gives good service (in the ruck) to Paddy Cripps, it’s so hard to stop.”

Click PLAY for John Longmire’s full chat with Tony Leonard and Jimmy Bartel

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