In the war of attrition between football clubs, the fight off the field is just as important, if not more, than the fight on it. Middle-aged men with receding hairlines and growing stomachs explode onto our screens and radios from time to time and remind us of this never ending war. Sometimes we forget its existence, our focus is on the football, but sometimes the football isn’t all that exciting compared to an all in administrative brawl. It’s not the same as an on-field brawl of course, no punches are thrown….hang on.
This week’s off-field brawl is between Collingwood President Eddie ‘Everywhere’ McGuire and Sydney Swans President Andrew ‘Is this thing on?’ Pridham. It all started in a rather ‘petty’ way you can say. Sydney coach John Longmire rejected an offer to be assistant coach of the International Rules team later this year because he didn’t want to work with McGuire, the team manager. McGuire thought it was all rather ‘petty’ and said he has put aside personal interest for the national team, so should John.
Well Sydney President Pridham didn’t let that one pass.
“It is a crazy world when Eddie McGuire is not content with just running the AFL, he’s now protecting our national interest. I can’t help but see a comparison between Eddie’s patriotism and protection of the national interest and the fact Clive Palmer is currently dominating the political agenda in Australia. I’ll leave you with that to think about.”
The Clive Palmer analogy is rather hilarious. It might the funniest thing said by any club President since Jeff Kennett promised no-body would hear from him as President. Andrew Pridham had made his point and found himself in the limelight. Eddie seethed and returned serve as only Eddie could…with utter rubbish.
“They have wound up Caroline Wilson to start running this campaign that I am the most powerful bloke in football and have too much to say and all the rest of it. I haven’t been powerful enough otherwise we may not be where we should be at the moment.”
It’s all a grand conspiracy you see.
“They are the greatest protectors of their self interest of any organisation God has put breath into,”
Let’s pause and reflect on that comment for a moment. Eddie McGuire is complaining about an organisation protecting itself self-interest. Oh the hypocrisy!
“These blokes haven’t developed anything up there … that’s why Jarrod Witts is playing first ruck for Collingwood, that’s why Lenny Hayes has been a superstar down at St Kilda.”
Errr……Jarrad McVeigh, Brandon Jack, Kieran Jack, Lewis Roberts Thompson, Harry Cunnigham, Craig Bird, Dane Rampe. All NSW developed players, but why let the facts get in the way of a good story.
“They have let blokes march out of the joint because they have had no interest ’cause they open the chequebook up and go after everyone. They have been doing it since Gerard Healy went up there.”
He’s right Sydney have signed some real big names in the past 25 years. Craig Bolton, Martin Mattner, Ben McGlynn, Nick Davis, Josh Kennedy, all household names before they came to Sydney! HA!!
Another unfinished chapter in the never ending Off-Field brawling chronicles. May they never end! .