Logan McDonald reacts after Sydney's loss to Fremantle in R16, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

LOGAN McDonald's heartbreaking after-the-siren miss that contributed to Sydney's 10-game winning run coming to an end underlines the importance of not wavering from a pre-shot routine, according to his coach John Longmire.

Faced with the difficulty of a shot to win the game or draw it with a behind, McDonald had a conversation with the umpire as he weighed up how far he could move around the mark. The 22-year old was outside the 50 metre arc on an angle and his effort sliced off to the right, allowing Fremantle to hang on for a one-point win.

"He's okay, it's just one of those things you learn about, just to stick to your routine. That's what you’ve got a routine for," Longmire said.

"I spoke to him after the game, there's no need to again because it's done, we move past it. He'll learn from that and be fine. It certainly wasn't the sole reason we lost the game, absolutely not."


While a miss from the spot McDonald kicked from is more than common at AFL level, the former No.4 draft pick is an interesting case right now as speculation continues about his future.

Out of contract at the end of the season and reportedly being courted by Collingwood and Fremantle, McDonald has managed just six goals in his past eight games.

"Goals is one part of it, that's the obvious part (but) it's not the only indicator we look at," Longmire said when asked about McDonald's form.

"We've generally being moving pretty well as a forward group, so you look at the whole.

"He’s still working on his game, he's still developing his game. We understand that young key forwards are not always going to be at the level of consistency that they're after. He's still growing, he's still learning. There's not a lot of young key forwards absolutely tearing it up every week."

Logan McDonald kicks a goal during round six, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

After Joel Amartey kicked nine goals three weeks ago, it was Hayden McLean's turn to lead the way amongst the key forwards against Fremantle with six contested marks and two goals. It was a return to form for McLean, with Longmire on Tuesday saying the forward/ruck's training in recent weeks had been limited due to soreness.

Three-time club champion Luke Parker will finish his six-week VFL suspension after this weekend and be ready for a return the following week when the Swans play North Melbourne, while captain Callum Mills is also expected to return for his first game of the season.

Longmire said the club will reassess the plans for the duo after Sunday's clash against St.Kilda at Marvel Stadium, but the likelihood is both will return via the VFL.

Veteran Harry Cunningham's 200th game was set to take place against the Saints, but a hamstring strain that forced him to be subbed out against the Dockers will sideline him for at least two weeks.

Harry Cunningham in action during the match between Sydney and Geelong at the SCG in round 16, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

"It's unfortunate. He's been such a terrific player for this football club for a long time playing multiple roles," Longmire said.

"He's a real stalwart, really experienced. He's got great speed, great game knowledge. He'll get there."

The Dockers' ability to maintain their on-ball pressure and game plan for all four quarters against Sydney's superstar midfield was the most impressive aspect of their SCG triumph.

It's the first time since the round three loss to Richmond that the Swans midfield has failed to blitz a game open at some stage of the game.

"The opposition try and do that, particularly in first quarters against us and we've got to make sure we give that back. Every team tries to do it," Longmire said.

"There's not a lot of difference in terms of what everyone tries to do.

"We'll try do it against St Kilda this week and out some real heat on around the ball and get our pressure numbers up."