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Brisbane Lions coach Chris Fagan says club is hurting but acknowledges progress in season 2020

Brisbane coach Chris Fagan believes the Lions’ 40-point loss in the preliminary final is a reminder of how difficult it is to rise up the ladder and challenge for a premiership.

The Lions’ season came to an end against an experienced Geelong team which provided a lesson in winning finals footy.

Fagan said those lessons would hold his players in good stead as they chased their dreams.

“We met a team who have lost a lot of preliminary finals and they desperately wanted to get into a grand final. They showed that in the way they played,” Fagan said.

“They were stronger in the contest than us. Their bodies were just stronger to break through in the clinches and clear the ball from congestion.

“Our guys are a fair bit younger than that Geelong side. That’s an experienced footy side with big bodies. That gives the feedback that our guys need to get into the gym a little bit more.”

Fagan said he was proud of the team’s rise from bottom of the ladder in 2017 to ending their finals drought last year and reaching the preliminary final this season.

The Lions are dejected after they were defeated by the Cats during the AFL 2nd Preliminary Final.
Camera IconThe Lions are dejected after they were defeated by the Cats during the AFL 2nd Preliminary Final. Credit: Quinn Rooney/via AFL Photos

The team is set to be strengthened by Essendon forward Joe Daniher joining the club in 2021.

Fagan said the club was on the rise and needed to keep working hard.

“We’ve made progress,” he said.

“We’re sad tonight and we’re hurting tonight but we’ve got to be realistic about these things. Success doesn’t happen overnight.

“Not usually. It’s rare. We’ve got to take our medicine and learn.”

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