Akermanis furore could hurt Dogs: Scott - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Akermanis furore could hurt Dogs: Scott

By Sam Lienert 21/05/2010 03:07:47 PM Comments (0)

North Melbourne coach Brad Scott says Western Bulldogs star Jason Akermanis' controversial comments about gay AFL players has put pressure on his teammates.

The Bulldogs play the Kangaroos at Etihad Stadium on Saturday and Scott says he knows from having Akermanis as a teammate during his playing days at Brisbane how disruptive a team can find his outspokeness.

"I played with him for 10 years and in those 10 years he certainly had a few things to say on various issues," Scott told reporters on Friday.

"I know his Bulldogs teammates wouldn't be overly happy with him at the moment."

Scott said while Akermanis had shown he could respond well to such pressure on the playing field, the attention he attracted through a newspaper column on Thursday could have a negative impact on the Dogs.

He said it was negative aspects of the Brownlow Medallist's personality that contributed to his departure from Brisbane despite the positive impact of his playing talent.

Akermanis wrote in the Herald Sun on Thursday that if a gay player came out it could destroy the fabric of a club and the league was not ready for it.

Scott joined the large chorus of AFL figures who have distanced themselves from that view, calling Akermanis a "lone voice" with views better suited to a "by-gone era".

The Kangaroos coach said he was keen for his team to overcome a respected rival such as the Bulldogs, after being thrashed by other powerhouse sides St Kilda and Collingwood earlier in the season.

The club's four wins so far have all been against clubs currently ranked lower than the 10th-placed Kangaroos.

Scott acknowledged young North ruckman Todd Goldstein would face a tough challenge, going solo against Bulldogs pair Ben Hudson and Will Minson, in the absence of injured big men David Hale and Hamish McIntosh.

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