Burton 'wants to continue' with Crows - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Burton 'wants to continue' with Crows

By Daniel Brettig 18/09/2009 06:22:00 PM Comments (0)

Brett Burton is a definite AFL starter with Adelaide in 2010 and fellow veterans Tyson Edwards, Simon Goodwin and Andrew McLeod are odds-on to join him within the next few days.

Crows coach Neil Craig has revealed he finalised Burton's intentions for next year in conversation on Thursday night, opening the way for contract negotiations to start.

The decorated careers of Burton (31), Edwards (33), Goodwin (32) and McLeod (33) are now all but guaranteed of a further chapter, the trio having decided the pain of last week's semi-final defeat was not the note on which to finish.

They have also satisfied Craig's rigorous demands in terms of attitude and preparation, which includes not accepting any player who decides "this is my last year".

"I need to have a final conversation with all four of them, I had it with Brett Burton last night and he's indicated that `I understand all that' and he wants to continue," Craig said on Friday.

"So we'll go down that path now of negotiating the contract.

"We're keen for Brett to go, and he understands what we spoke about.

"I need to have that final conversation with Andrew, Tyson and Simon, and I'll do that within the next couple of days, then they can make their final decisions and away we go.

"It's important for them because then they know where they're going ... you don't want that to linger, and why would you?"

Burton's run-down display in the Collingwood loss created some speculation about whether he would play on, but Craig put his tired legs into context.

"Brett's had some criticism (from people) saying it might be time for him to go, but people have to understand that Brett Burton has got himself back into a condition having done no pre-season and coming off a major knee reconstruction," Craig said.

"I could argue that what Brett Burton was able to do for us was quite extraordinary based on those conditions."

Craig also said that the veteran quartet were in a fortunate position of being able to extend their careers because of the harsh calls made on other players in previous seasons that allowed Adelaide to re-stock their list with youth.

Ben Hart, Matthew Clarke, Jason Torney, Matthew Bode and Kris Massie were among the numerous quality players whose careers were brought to an arguably premature close by the imperative for the Crows to go younger.

"It does, no doubt. You talk about Hart, Clarke, Massie, Bode, Torney, they didn't have the luxury of what these guys have got, in one aspect because of the necessity and urgency that we've got to get some young people into our football club," Craig said.

"So that's just good timing, but they're also quality players as well, I'm not saying the other guys weren't but I'm sure they appreciate they're lucky in terms of timing."

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