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Angry Eddie McGuire takes aim at Sydney, clubs and News Corp

2013: Facing an unforgiving media after making an on air gaffe regarding Adam Goodes. Click for more photos

Life and times of Eddie McGuire

The polarising Collingwood president and media figure Eddie McGuire has been in the spotlight for three decades. Photo: Pat Scala

Collingwood president Eddie McGuire has launched another stinging attack on Sydney, and also taken aim at rival club presidents and even one of his own employers, as his feud with the Swans intensifies.

The spat between the clubs escalated last week when it emerged Swans coach John Longmire would not accept a role as an assistant coach on the International Rules side because of McGuire's involvement as chef de mission. This came as a result of McGuire's persistent call for the Swans' cost-of-living allowance to be scrapped, a move the AFL has now phased in.

Eddie McGuire.

Eddie McGuire. Photo: Getty Images

Having likened McGuire to Clive Palmer at his pre-match address on Saturday, Swans chairman Andrew Pridham took to Twitter on Sunday night suggesting it was time for McGuire to step down, after McGuire had again attacked the Swans on his own Fox Footy show.

McGuire said Pridham, who is in his first season in the role after replacing Richard Colless, had only been in the job for "five minutes", prompting this from Pridham.

"Been on @sydneyswans for 13 years not 5 minutes. Perhaps Eddie has been around too long?"

He angrily responded to McGuire's claim that the Swans had voted against the birth of Greater Western Sydney at a Commission meeting.

"Eddie @sydneyswans voted for @GWS_Giants.  I was at the meeting and voted. You must have been asleep in that meeting. Tell the truth."

On his Triple M breakfast show on Monday morning, McGuire called for intervention from the AFL Commission.

"It's time for the AFL Commission to come and have a cup of coffee with a few people and let's get the war room going because you know what we have got to do? We have got to get back to having some fun. It's like going to the tax office at the moment," he said.

"Remember when Richard Colless gave me the 'bird' on Four Corners at that time and everyone went around in circles ... and yet down the track suddenly everyone realises that the Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) was a complete crock.

"I am sorry but I signalled that 10 years ago. I know I lead with my chin sometimes and I need to walk away from fights rather than into them sometimes but the other clubs have got to start putting their hands up. Now they are all lobbying around the back of the room and the rest of it, no one will say anything, so I have to go up the front sometimes.

"I am not playing martyr here. But I am getting a bit tired of it.

"The AFL know this, and I know they are working on it so again I have got faith but then you work out what they (Swans) are doing ... it is a couple-pronged attack. They have wound up (Age chief football writer) 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.

"Then you get Pridham who starts attacking your integrity."

Taking aim at what he feels is the Swans' propensity to target established players, with stars Kurt Tippett and Lance Franklin the headline signings in the past two years, McGuire said the Swans once "stood up at a presidents' meeting and said we have no interest in developing the game" in NSW. He re-iterated that no club fought harder against the inclusion of the Giants than the Swans.

"They are the greatest protectors of their self interest of any organisation God has put breath into," he said.

"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.

"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 (during the Geoff Edelsten era)."

McGuire was also displeased with the artwork Sydney's Daily Telegraph had used, depicting him sitting on a wrecking ball with Palmer, the maverick MP.

"Is that from News Ltd? I am glad I am the face of Fox Footy for them on Foxtel. That's good," he said facetiously.

The accompanying story was written by the Telegraph's chief football reporter Neil Cordy, a former Footscray and Swans defender. McGuire even suggested the amiable Cordy was a cheerleader for the northern club.

"That would be like 'Joffa' writing the match report for Collingwood," McGuire said.

McGuire's frustration also extends to Sydney's academy, which allows clubs in non-AFL states to develop and coach young footballers and have first dibs on them come the national draft.

Brandon Jack is the only player from the Swans' Academy to play in the AFL to date.

174 comments

  • Oh, put a sock in it Eddie. I'd be more concerned about your team's performance yesterday than any problems you have with the Swans. And why should a Premiership coach lower himself to accept an assistant coaching gig to a ridiculous, irrelevant international rules gig?

    Commenter
    Jace
    Date and time
    July 14, 2014, 2:15PM
    • Good onya Eddie. About time the Swans were taken to task over two years of dubious salary trickery..............

      Commenter
      BBJ
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 2:27PM
    • On a side note I looked up the meaning of Self Interest and there was a picture of Eddie...

      Commenter
      coopies
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 2:39PM
    • i think McGuire lost all credibility when he and Pert said that there was a zero tolerance to racism amongst Collingwood members. If a member made racist comments their membership would be withdrawn - no exceptions.

      Two weeks later McGuire makes racist remarks about Goodes. A year later is still President of the Club.

      A fine example

      Commenter
      Gaz
      Location
      Yarrawonga
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 2:53PM
    • The conversation around the northern teams' academies is all wrong. Those academies are for now a fair replacement for the father son opportunities those teams rarely have.

      However what we should be asking is how have Sydney only been able to develop one player from their academy onto their list? I take it the other clubs have been even less successful. McGuire is right to question the Swan's commitment to such an academy in this regard. Juniors in NSW are woefully incompetent compared to the juniors in Aussie Rules states. They may be physically capable but they often lack the basic understanding of the game required to be elite.

      Commenter
      Jez
      Location
      Melb
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 3:07PM
    • @Jez - Eddie isn't worried about the Swans' commitment to their academy. They get kids in at an early age (before they get locked in by the other codes) and put in a lot of time and money developing them even though most of them probably won't be AFL calibre. If that's not commitment, I don't know what is.

      No, what Eddie's complaining about is that for all that effort, the Swans get first dibs. It's not even exclusive access; these players are available to any other club to recruit, so long as they bid more than what Sydney's willing to pay (same as the father-son rules that the Victorian clubs are more than happy to take advantage of).

      Commenter
      Spex
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 3:39PM
    • Agree Jace,
      they played like a bunch of convent girls yesterday. They wanted it, they didn't want it. When they got it, they had no idea what to do with it.......

      Commenter
      Corbachov
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 3:41PM
    • Jez,

      The sydney swans academy in its current format has only been in existence for the past 4 years so it's far too soon to say how successful it will be in developing players who can make it to the top level. There is no doubt that there is a much smaller talent pool in NSW nevertheless year by year both the swans and gws academy members are becoming more and more competitive, even beating more favoured opponents from Victoria and the NSW border areas.

      The most important aspect of the academy from my point of view as a parent is that it gives players better training and competition than they could get in sydney if they just competed at club level.

      Given that only a small percentage of participants in any sport go on to play at an elite level, even if the academy doesn't produce significant numbers of professional level players that doesn't mean it has no value. There are lots of benefits of the system other than producing professional players.

      Commenter
      Azhure
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 3:46PM
    • Has Eddie the Mouth heard ever heard the saying "empty vessels make the most noise" - of course not he's sprouting too much BS to listen. Get a grip Eddie, wealthiest club, most members etc doesn't matter a fig when you're not as smart at recruiting as Swans Management (Roos in particular getting kids like Kieran Jack) and then bolstering the team with class imports. Thats why they don't miss finals series and this year will hopefully kick Collingwoood out if they make the 8.

      Another Hungry Grand Final with NO PIES AT THE MCG - AGAIN

      Commenter
      Brendan
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 4:09PM
    • Would the Pies have won in 1990 without Darren Jolley and Luke Ball in the team?

      Commenter
      Philip
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      July 14, 2014, 4:10PM

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