Eade sidesteps re-signing talk at 'Dogs - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eade sidesteps re-signing talk at 'Dogs

By Roger Vaughan 02/04/2009 05:27:21 PM Comments (0)

Rodney Eade is the second AFL coach to face scrutiny about his future since the start of the season - and it is only round two.

Eade is among seven senior coaches who are out of contract this year, meaning a particularly volatile environment surrounding a job never noted for security of tenure.

The pressure is already mounting for Richmond's Terry Wallace after their horrible first round loss to Carlton.

Eade is at the other end of the spectrum, with the Western Bulldogs making a preliminary final last year and then impressing against Fremantle in round one.

But all it took was a speculative newspaper article on Thursday to turn a Bulldogs coaching staff sponsorship announcement into a flurry of questions about Eade's future.

Eade and Bulldogs chief executive Campbell Rose were careful not to mention any timeframe for negotiations.

They also stressed that the only thing that matters is this season.

"You don't listen to too many stories ... but I'm certainly enjoying my time at the Bulldogs, it's a terrific playing group, a terrific staff," Eade said.

"I'd certainly love to stay, there's no doubt about that, but the main thing is the job at hand at the moment - we've only had one game into the season, it's a pretty big year for us.

"We had a pretty good year last year and we want to cement that and hopefully go further.

"Everyone here has had a hard pre-season, we've done a lot of work. Really the whole focus for everybody is on the season at hand."

Eade only bristled when asked if he might look at another club.

"That's a ridiculous question - I'm here, I'm a Bulldog person, it's 2009 and that's my whole focus," he said.

He fobbed off the suggestion that his salary is $600,000, calling the figure "a little bit inflated" and joking that he would like to see journalists' wages publicised as well.

Eade said he did not think there was any rush to negotiate a new deal.

Rose would not say whether the Bulldogs might try to re-sign Eade during the season.

"It's out there, we'll see the season out and we'll agree on a ... time when we sit down," Rose said.

"We don't need any distractions - our focus is one day in September and there are a lot of bricks that have got to be laid to get anywhere near that."

Bulldogs utility Lindsay Gilbee strongly endorsed Eade, who has been at the club since 2005.

"I would love to see Rodney stay around, he's been fantastic - ever since he's got here, he's brought a hard edge and a lot more professionalism to the group," Gilbee said.

Meanwhile, Eade said forward Robert Murphy would probably resume playing through the VFL this weekend.

Murphy is yet to play this year because of knee surgery.

"It's recovery from an operation that goes forward a couple of steps and goes back half a step," Eade said.

Eade added Brownlow Medallist Adam Cooney, another slow starter after off-season groin surgery, had recovered well from round one.

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