Tongue says compromise cannot be considered
Raiders legend Alan Tongue. Photo: Rohan Thomson
Canberra Raiders legend Alan Tongue insists club culture cannot be compromised as troubled duo Josh Dugan and Blake Ferguson fight to save their Raiders careers.
The club is yet to rule out ripping up their contracts after they were stood down indefinitely on Tuesday for breaching the Raiders' strict alcohol policy.
What further action the club takes will be discussed at a board meeting on Thursday.
Furner visited the headquarters of AFL premier Sydney Swans recently in an attempt to improve his club's culture.
The Swans have a renowned ''no d---heads'' policy, but Tongue stopped short of calling for them to have their papers stamped.
''Dave [Furner] can only speak about it so much, senior guys can only speak about it so much, it comes down to individual guys and what they do with their preparation … you can't keep players under lock and key,'' he said.
''[Furner] has been looking at the Sydney Swans and the culture they developed over a number of years.
''It comes down to individuals taking ownership of their actions, they have to live up to the standards and culture the club's trying to set.''
After Canberra's 32-10 loss at Penrith on Sunday, the players and coaching staff were outraged that Dugan and Ferguson had been drinking during the 24 hours afterwards.
In 2008 Canberra sacked playmaker Todd Carney, then considered its best player, for repeated infringements.
Two years later, outside-back Joel Monaghan left the club after Mad Monday pictures of him simulating a lewd act with a dog surfaced on social media.
''You'd think everyone would knuckle down [after the Penrith loss] and it's totally gone the other way,'' Tongue said.
''A lot of people were filthy with the Todd Carney issue [sacking him]. It was made really clear then that he was our best player and you could see what a phenomenal talent he was, but they weren't going to stand for that. The club's done it in the past [sacked players], where do they go from here?''
Scott Sattler, a grand final winner with Penrith, believes termination of their contracts isn't the answer.
But he said the club needed to seriously assess whether Dugan and Ferguson's issues were affecting the Raiders' brand and image.
''Decisions in this situation have to be made about how much damage they're doing to the actual emblem, the Raiders emblem on their jersey,'' Sattler said.
''Drinking while injured is a definite no-no. Is it worth a sacking? Probably not. They need to make a decision on what legacy they want to leave, because the legacy Ferguson and Dugan are leaving right now is that they're d---heads.
''If the legacy they want to leave is great clubmen, players other players want to play alongside, then they've got some major adjustments within themselves they need to make.''
After the Raiders won just six games in 2011, Australian Sport Commission manager and coach John Waser undertook an extensive review of the club. Leadership coach Sam Patterson has also mentored players since last season.