Stick with shorter AFL quarters: Longmire

Sydney coach John Longmire believes the AFL should explore shortening games beyond this season.
Sydney coach John Longmire believes the AFL should explore shortening games beyond this season.

Sydney coach John Longmire believes the AFL should examine making shorter games a permanent change, suggesting it would benefit players, fans and clubs.

The Swans face Collingwood at the Gabba on Thursday night, giving them four days to recover from a loss to St Kilda at the same venue.

Longmire and the club's medical team will wait until the last minute to make a call on whether some players are ready to face the Magpies.

Trimming the length of quarters - one of many changes the AFL adopted to help navigate the COVID-19 pandemic - will likely allow more stars to take the park than would otherwise be the case.

AFL boss Gillon McLachlan previously indicated that 16-minute quarters will be scrapped for 2021 but Longmire hopes there might be a rethink.

"I've always been on record as supporting less time in a game," Longmire told reporters.

"I understand there's a lot to that. TV rights and other things that need to be taken into account.

"If you want your best players playing over a longer period during the season, and for seasons, I'd be supportive of at least looking at less time for games.

"That's relevant from a player welfare perspective but also for fans."

Geelong counterpart Chris Scott, speaking earlier on Tuesday, argued that "in the fullness of time, most people will advocate for the shorter games".

Longmire's Swans had a light training session on Tuesday.

The 2012 premiership coach noted rival clubs had given Sydney "a lot of assistance" regarding what to expect from unprecedented turnarounds and a compressed block of games.

Longmire said it is too early to speculate as to whether any players will have to be rested this week.

"You need to give players until the last minute," he said.

"We expect most will be OK.

"There has to be room for gut feel ... and you don't get every decision right.

"We just have to make sure our players are not put at risk by playing."

Australian Associated Press