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The best bits: Michael Voss

Membership on us - PTV The playing group are shouting 10 2019 memberships.

PORT ADELAIDE senior assistant coach Michael Voss was interviewed on Adelaide radio program Sportsday SA, where he had a wide-ranging discussion about the Power’s 2019 preparations.

Voss discussed where the side needs to improve in a tight competition, he expressed his confidence in the side’s depth to cover some traded players and he discussed the need for players to have outlets away from football in light of Ollie Wines’ shoulder injury while water skiing.

The former Brisbane skipper also gave updates on some of the club’s new draftees, heaping praise on the new group as a collective.

Here are the best bits:

Michael Voss on how much needs to change in the way Port Adelaide plays to be better in 2019:

“We look at it more thoroughly in some areas and it’s a tweak in others. If you’re talking about ball speed, we feel like that’s a little bit of a tweak to quicken us up a bit and some other areas we need to give some more attention to. We can’t shy away from the fact that we were in a very good position and we weren’t able to sink a couple of really crucial games that were decided by a few points and some really big moments that could have swung our season in a different way. We were obviously very good in defence but that didn’t necessarily help us in the way we wanted to score so there’s a general balance of both and when we talk about modern methods and systems, you’ve got to have that balance to help the other.”

Michael Voss on where the improvement will come from and how close the competition is:

“There is an element of, yeah, we must improve and we’ll get some of that organically from younger players coming through, but there’s also some things we need to make sure we tidy up around our system. The other one is of course, big moments, and we look at Hawthorn’s success in their year and they were able to close some big moments and finish really high up the ladder. We got a couple done but got done in a couple of others. It really is that tight and if you look at years gone by, if you look at Richmond, you look at West Coast, you look at Collingwood, they’re sides that have been able to go from somewhere in the range of seventh to 13th and then find their way into a Grand Final the following year, so it really is that tight.”

Michael Voss on whether players should be allowed to take part in recreational activities outside of football:

“We’ve got to be really conscious that they’ve got lives outside of that. We always ask that they take care of themselves and they’re certainly not going out there intentionally to hurt themselves, that’s a guarantee. But the environment (Wines) was in and the expertise he has in that area, you know, we’re very comfortable with where he’s at. As a general discussion, if you even go past the Ollie stuff, we move into mental health and we talk about balance of life. It’s a really important subject and we’re certainly really keen that we make sure we support our players in that area.

Michael Voss on who will play through the midfield in the potential absence of Wines and with the trading of Jared Polec and Chad Wingard:

“We’ve got some younger players that we drafted this year are really putting a strong foot forward. That doesn’t mean that we’re sitting here saying round 1 they’ll play but we’ve had some really good starts from some of our younger players that have come in. And we’ve also had some depth in other areas so Travis Boak has played in that area, clearly Brad Ebert, Sam Gray’s come through that area at times so I think when we look at a midfield group, we’ve got to look beyond the normal four or five. We’ve certainly got expertise in other areas that have played in other areas so we’ll have to call on that to add to our flexibility.”

Michael Voss on Connor Rozee:

“At this stage of their careers you’re looking for what they can do, not so much what they can’t do. We understand there are some things to work on but I’d say as a collective group, and certainly Connor fits well and truly into this, we’ve added real athleticism to our group. They can not only play footy but they’ve got some serious agility and some great decision making in traffic and we’d expect that he’d get some games throughout the year.”

Michael Voss on Zak Butters:

“I didn’t hear as much about Butters before he got here but he hasn’t put a foot wrong. He just wants the footy in his hands, he hunts it really well – he’s not shy to want to get the ball, and he kicks the ball really well. He’s small enough that he’s going to get under people’s skins so he’s not afraid to get in their face and give a little bit of lip, and everyone’s gotta love that.”

Michael Voss on Xavier Duursma:

“Xavier had a slight hamstring awareness just before Christmas but other than that hasn’t put a foot wrong. He’s been playing a fair bit in the wing position as well as half forward and he’s an elite runner and certainly very brave so we feel like we’ve got some good ones.”

Michael Voss on Riley Grundy:

“Like any tall player, we’ve always got to be prepared to take our time with them. He’s got to put a bit of shape and size onto his body. But he does not shirk anything, he puts his head in any hole and he competes really hard so as a big fella that’s got genuine speed, he’s really good.”

Michael Voss on Boyd Woodcock:

“He just does smart things. He turns up in the right spot, you can tell that he’s a genuine footballer. Again one of those ones that wants the footy in his hands and young players that want the footy is a good attribute to have.”