Demetriou backs Voss contract offer - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Demetriou backs Voss contract offer

By Greg Buckle, Adam Cooper and Justin Chadwick 11/07/2008 06:48:45 PM Comments (0)

AFL chief Andrew Demetriou said it would have been "irresponsible" to offer Michael Voss a five-year deal to coach the Gold Coast.

The AFL had offered Brisbane's triple-premiership captain a three-year deal to coach the new club, known as GC17.

That effectively meant Voss would develop the playing list in 2009-10 but only coach the team in 2011, when the 17th club is admitted to the league.

Voss, 33, wanted a five-year deal.

The 1996 Brownlow Medallist on Thursday announced he would accept a role as an assistant coach with West Coast in 2009 and 2010.

"We thought Michael might be someone good as the first appointment of (a) coach, but we weren't prepared to commit to five years, particularly with an untried coach," Demetriou told Fairfax radio.

"It would have been irresponsible for us to do that.

"But having said that, now that Michael has said no, there are so many wonderful opportunities out there.

"We've got so many people knocking down the door.

"I want to congratulate Michael, I think it's a good appointment for him and it's a great appointment for West Coast."

Speaking to reporters in Melbourne, Demetriou denied the Voss move to head west was a blow.

"There's no setback. I think people need to get out in the commercial world to understand that sometimes things happen for the good and you move on," Demetriou said.

"There's always other options, always other options. If you're choosing between a tried and an untried coach you don't go and offer five-year deals."

But Demetriou added: "His marketability (in Queensland) would have been a positive, absolutely."

Brisbane Lions co-captain Jonathan Brown said his former skipper would further his coaching career by having a stint away from his home state.

But his departure was a loss for football in Queensland.

"Vossy might end up still being the inaugural coach of the Gold Coast, but for the time being certainly the promotional factor might be hurt a little bit unless you get someone of an equivalent profile," Brown said in Melbourne.

West Coast assistant coach Peter Sumich says he is comfortable with the arrival of Voss at the club, despite predicting they will be competing with one another for a senior coach's berth in 2011.

Sumich, who was interviewed for both the Essendon and Melbourne coaching vacancies last year, expressed interest in becoming head coach of the Gold Coast franchise.

"In years to come where he wants to coach or tries to coach depends on what jobs are available and whether that's me and him going for the same job, we'll wait and see," Sumich said in Perth.

"That's fine and I understand the situation.

"I'll put my hand up (for the Gold Coast gig in 2011) but at the end of the day I know it's a long shot.

"I think it's run by the AFL and they're probably going to put a development-type person in there for the next couple of years and the job will be up for grabs in a couple of years.

"I suppose the number one contender will be Michael."

Gold Coast bid member Graeme Downie remained upbeat on Friday night.

"There could be big names like Leigh Matthews available, who knows?" Downie told Channel Ten.

But Lions coach Matthews told reporters: "I actually made a policy decision in my own mind about two months ago that I'm not going to be involved ... what you've got to understand this is a massive project that's going to have twists and turns and hurdles and falls and it's two or three years off.

"I've decided not to be commenting on it week by week in any shape or form."

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