Melbourne's future not in doubt: AFL - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Melbourne's future not in doubt: AFL

By Robert Grant 25/07/2008 04:28:11 PM Comments (0)

The AFL is concerned about the state of wooden spoon favourites Melbourne, but will ensure the club's future is not in doubt.

AFL CEO Andrew Demetriou said that Melbourne's new board led by former champion player Jim Stynes needed to back its plans with action.

"I wouldn't say their future's on the line - we support all the clubs - but I don't think any club wants to be in the position they're in and that's why they're doing something about it," Demetriou told Fairfax Radio.

"Whilst I'll say they've put together a very, very capable board, they've got a lot ahead of them, they've still got significant debt.

"It just doesn't happen with talks and now we need to see action."

Demetriou described the dismissal this week of CEO Paul McNamee after only three months in the job as "unfortunate".

"If they had their time again they would have done it differently," he said.

"I think it was just unfortunate. When these things happen they are never pleasant.

"I think Paul conducted himself with great dignity (and) I think what the Melbourne Football Club and their board are trying to do is to move on," he said.

"Paul wasn't appointed by that board so that made it difficult for him but they've drawn a line in the sand and they've got great plans going forward.

"I wish Paul very well. In the time we dealt with him he was very professional, he was on the move, he was trying to do things at the Melbourne Football Club and we're seeing that now with Jim Stynes and their board."

Meanwhile Demetriou said the league was keen to act as a medium to help improve relations between the football club and the Melbourne Cricket Club.

The Demons have long felt they have not received adequate financial assistance from the MCC.

"I think it's very important that the Melbourne Football Club and the Melbourne Cricket club have an enhanced relationship," Demetriou said.

"It's got better over the years, I think it can be even better. We'd like to help facilitate that, we'd like to be party to whatever we can do to help that.

"I think it's very important that they have a very, very close relationship."

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