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AFL commentator Jonathan Brown has blasted high-profile Melbourne recruit Jake Lever, saying he looks soft.
The Demons are under fire from all directions after an appalling 67-point loss to Hawthorn in the wet on Sunday at the MCG.
It revived all the questions about whether Melbourne are good enough as they aim for their first finals appearance since 2006.
Lever clearly is still fitting into Melbourne’s defence after his move from Adelaide and Brown, the former Brisbane captain, is unimpressed.
“At the moment, he has a soft look about him,” Brown said on Fox Footy’s The Couch
“I know he’s not a soft player, we’ve seen that at Adelaide.
“He’s clearly bereft of confidence … where his place is in defence. He looks confused.”
Melbourne great Garry Lyon and former Demons coach Paul Roos also weighed in, saying next Tuesday’s Anzac Eve match against reigning premiers Richmond is critical.
“I wouldn’t be selling my stock, but we want to see a response,” Lyon said.
“(Hawthorn) are exactly what Melbourne weren’t – organised, structured behind, the footy, disciplined.
“That’s what Melbourne should aspire to be.”
Several critics are noting Melbourne’s inability to stop the opposition once they go on a scoring run.
After the Demons led by 21 points in the first term, they could only manage one goal for the rest of the game.
Their defence leaked like a sieve in the Melbourne wet and the Hawks’ scoring run became a deluge.
“The alarming pattern for Melbourne is the ease with which other teams can score (against them) in bunches,” Roos said.
“At the moment, it’s structural … you look at the defence and if you’re Richmond, I guarantee you what they’re saying – ‘boys, launch it in’.
“It’s not like you need anything ‘lace-out’ going into the forward line at the moment.”
Brown was also critical of Jordan Lewis, saying the Hawks and Demons veteran would be on notice.
But Brown added the four-time Hawthorn premiership player’s lofty reputation meant he deserved a game against the Tigers.