Lincoln McCarthy will debut for the Lions against West Coast.
Lincoln McCarthy will debut for the Lions against West Coast. Glenn Ferguson

Former Cats purring at new clubs

THEY say nice guys finish last. Geelong great Cameron Ling hopes that's not the case with two ex-Cats who will start new chapters in their AFL careers this weekend with Queensland teams.

Lincoln McCarthy will make his first appearance for Brisbane against West Coast on Saturday night while George Horlin-Smith will debut for the Gold Coast against St Kilda on Sunday.

"They are high-quality people ... as good as young men as you can get," Ling said.

Midfielder Horlin-Smith managed just 51 games in seven seasons at the Cats, well down in the pecking order behind Patrick Dangerfield, Joel Selwood, Mitch Duncan and co.

"I hope he gets a great run at playing, plenty of game time. I rate him as a footballer," Ling said.

"But almost the biggest impact he's going to have at that club is helping build that culture with (coach) Stewy Dew.

"Every time he played for Geelong he seemed to do his job perfectly well; find the ball 20 something times, be strong in the contests, occasionally do a job on a dangerous opposition midfielder.

"But then he'd be squeezed out again a week or two later.

Gold Coast Suns recruit George Horlin-Smith. Picture: Supplied.
George Horlin-Smith is set to turn out for the Suns in round one.

"It almost felt unfair when he got squeezed out because he had done nothing wrong. It was just the players coming back in were better."

Half-forward McCarthy, likewise, was restricted at Geelong due to the depth of their list as well as injuries, playing just 29 games in seven seasons.

He's been plagued by groin, hip, back, quad and foot problems.

"He's just one of the happiest, nicest blokes you'll meet, so positive ... a ripping fella," Ling said.

"He plays taller than what he is. He's only a little bloke. He's good at ground level, but he can launch at mark.

"I think he'll add something (but) it's all about his body. No one denied his talent."