Brownlow medallist Lachie Neale is confident he'll be fit to face Melbourne on Thursday night, with the Brisbane onballer still needing to prove his fitness ahead of the Round 5 clash following a recent ankle issue.

Neale rolled his ankle in Round 3 against Collingwood but was able to play out the game, however, the veteran Lion was kept to a quiet week on the track in the lead-up to Gather Round.

Brisbane decided to sub Neale out of last Friday's win over North Melbourne in the final quarter to give the midfielder further rest, with Neale still needing to pass fitness tests in the coming days before the Lions head south to face the Demons at the MCG.

Speaking to media, the 30-year-old - who celebrates his 250th game on Thursday - revealed he will "have to tick some boxes" before getting the all-clear for this week's blockbuster bout but is feeling confident.

"It's feeling pretty good, it's pulled up well," Neale said.

"The extra quarter rest helped. It was just from the week before, I had a pretty nasty [ankle] roll against Collingwood. The (North Melbourne) game was pretty much over at three-quarter time, so I just had a little rest.

"It wasn't (pre-planned). When I came off we had a quick discussion, the best thing was to rest it.

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"I still have to tick some boxes. I haven't really done much since the game. I've got to tick off some agility and speed to make sure I'm ready to go.

"It feels better than this time last week, so I'm really confident I'll be good to go Thursday night."

Melbourne are carrying a four-game winning run into Round 5, while the Lions found some form in Adelaide against North Melbourne to claim their first win of 2024.

The two clubs will meet this week for the first time since last July when the Demons booted four goals in the final seven minutes to claim a thrilling one-point win over the travelling Lions.

The past three encounters between Brisbane and Melbourne have been decided by 13 points or less - a period that included the Lions' upset semi-final win in 2022.

The budding rivalry has seen two of the form teams over the past several seasons understand the stakes of Thursday's affair, with Neale hoping his side's return to form can continue in the lead-up to a crucial next three weeks.

"They're playing great footy. It's going to be a massive test for us, on their home ground as well," the Lions co-captain said of his side's upcoming match.

"We've been building the last couple of weeks to put in a really good performance against a great side, so we look forward to it. It's going to be a challenge.

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"Them, GWS and Geelong, who we've got in [Round 6 and 7], the next few weeks will give us a great insight into where we're at. Hopefully we can mix it with the big boys.

"We've had great battles against [Melbourne] the past 4-5 years. There was probably a period where they had a dominance over us, they're a great side. We love matching up against them, they probably are the benchmark of the competition in my eyes.

"We think we're a real chance to get the win, so we go there hoping to get the four points and bring it back to Brissy."

The Lions will travel to Melbourne to face the Demons at the MCG on Thursday at 7:30pm (AEST).