Dermott's call: Folau's got talent, give him time

Having just joined GWS's coaching staff on a part-time basis, Dermott Brereton doesn't have a say in who plays each week, but if he did he wouldn't be dropping Israel Folau to the seconds to work on his game.

After three rounds there have been calls for Folau to be sent back to the twos. But Brereton, in Sydney yesterday for his first session working with the club's forwards, is not an advocate for the move.

''I think he needs to play, and stay in a competition standard where he's going to learn to become that standard,'' he said when the question was posed.

''The best training you can get is trial and error and that happens out on the ground, so the more time he gets into him out on the ground, the more tuition he gets into him, the better placed he will be.

''He does some things which are instinctive which very, very few players in the AFL, who have grown up with it, can naturally do. He needs to be able to get to a position, get to places on the ground, recognise the opportunities as the ball is coming forward, so he can utilise those talents, because the talent is there.

''I'm staggered at how good his hands are. Just one session here and having a look at him, he is incredibly good with his clean hands below his knees, and if he can do that, he can catch it anywhere, and I've seen him jump and turn in the air like very few AFL players can. There is some real talent there to work with, we just have to give him the knowledge so he gets the footy.


''Everyone is marking Israel so hard. He's been in it for five minutes. You've got to understand it's a unique game to try to learn. It's a difficult game to pick up. Should we get some knowledge into him, he's going to be quite a good player.

''He's going to be something pretty special.''

While Folau, and most of his young Giant teammates weren't born when Brereton was at his absolute peak, they all know who he is, and the respect was evident as you could have heard a pin drop in the room, as they all looked on, wide-eyed, while he took them through their drills.

The five-time premiership player says he wished he had a physique like some of the young Giants when he started out, and he has no doubt the club will be a power one day.

''The one thing I do have a laugh about is if you think this team won't be seriously challenging in four or five years, you've got another thing coming. The reason I took this on is because I have real belief in what's happening here.''

While Folau and the Giants will be looking for a respectable performance against Adelaide on Saturday, the Swans will be keen to maintain their unbeaten start to the season with a win at the SCG against North Melbourne on Sunday.

It won't only be the four competition points at stake, with the winner to claim the inaugural HeartKids Cup, an initiative to help raise awareness for children suffering from heart disease and their families.

The cup was launched yesterday by Swans co-captain Jarrad McVeigh, who sadly lost his baby daughter Luella to heart complications last year.