Thompson still not done deal for Bombers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Thompson still not done deal for Bombers

John Salvado 08/11/2010 01:29:21 PM Comments (0)

James Hird says it would be great to have Mark Thompson join his new-look Essendon coaching staff, while insisting the two-time Geelong premiership mentor has yet to sign a deal with the Bombers.

Citing burnout, Thompson quit the Cats last month with one season remaining on his contract after 11 years at the helm.

He is considered a certainty to be appointed in the coming weeks as the senior assistant coach at Essendon, the club where he first made his name as a triple premiership player.

"To my knowledge there hasn't been a contract signed," new head coach Hird said on Monday.

"Mark is on a break at the moment and we're respectful of that.

That's all I've really got to say - anything else and I'd be making something up.

"There's no doubt, and I've said it all along, that he'd be a fantastic asset. He'd be great to have on-board."

Hird spoke with his 1993 premiership teammate a couple of weeks ago about the prospect of Thompson joining him back to Windy Hill.

"I hope (he wants the job) but I couldn't tell you one way or the other whether he is going to come," said Hird.

"When we've got something really positive to say and definite to say we'll come out and say it.

"But at the moment it would just be speculation."

In three seasons under Hird's sacked predecessor Matthew Knights, Essendon were viewed as an exciting attacking outfit, but one which often failed to pay sufficient heed to the defensive aspects of the game.

Hird has pledged there will be a change of philosophy under his tutelage.

"It's really just about improvement, everything we do is about improvement and hard work," he said.

"Football is not rocket science, it's just about working hard and working on the defensive side of your game as well as the attacking side of your game."

Essendon will only make minimal changes to their playing list in Hird's first year at the helm, although they are resigned to losing Bachar Houli.

The disgruntled midfielder, who played only five senior games under Knights in 2010, has walked out on the Bombers and is set to join Richmond in the pre-season draft.

"We'd love Bachar to be here on the list but he's made a decision that he doesn't want to be, so you cut your ties and you move on," said Hird.

"We're a proud club, we're a club that's moving somewhere and if he doesn't want to be a part of it then that's his decision."

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