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High-scoring shootouts 'the new frontier of football', says Simpson

Alex Malcolm  March 28, 2016 12:30 AM

Simmo tips footy's 'new frontier' West Coast coach Adam Simpson foresees plenty of high-scoring football
Teams are really taking you on with hands and playing pretty high-octane football

SUNDAY'S shootout between West Coast and the Brisbane Lions is the "new frontier of football", according to Eagles coach Adam Simpson.

The Eagles and the Lions piled on 41 goals between them in near perfect conditions at Domain Stadium on Sunday night.

AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has been strong in his assertion that the fans want to see more goals.

Simpson said the CEO would be pleased after he had noticed a clear trend emerging across the pre-season and round one.

Full match coverage and stats

"It was a weird game," Simpson said.

"Gill's got his request. High-scoring footy was at its best today.

"It's a bit of a trend of the competition at the moment. Teams are really taking you on with hands and playing pretty high-octane football.

"It's exciting, it's the new frontier of footy."

Simpson noticed a significant shift in the Lions' game-style, commenting on their boldness through the middle of the ground.

Lions coach Justin Leppitsch was pleased with the style and flair that his young team had shown despite lamenting the bevy of turnovers that proved costly.

"I thought our style of play was much better today," Leppitsch said.

"We are playing with a bit of a better style, a bit of flair, which was good. So we'll continue that."

WATCH: Justin Leppitsch's full post-match media conference

The Lions also had midfielders Lewis Taylor (three goals), Allen Christensen (three), Tom Rockliff (two), Daniel Rich (two) and Pearce Hanley (one) combine for 11 of their 15 goals against West Coast.

Leppitsch said the AFL's new interchange cap of 90 rotations had forced his side to rotate his midfielders deep forward and he liked what he saw.

"We rotated that position a bit through Daniel and Tom, a few others, and Pearce, and that seemed to work OK," Leppitsch said.

"With the rotation cap at the moment you're going to have to rotate your mids forward. I think the thing that comes out of the game as well is our mids can do that well and provide some stuff down there in the forward line."

Both coaches lamented defensive lapses and said that teams would need to adjust to the new high-scoring trends in order to strike the right balance between attack and defence.