Don't turn off new AFL teams: Malthouse - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Don't turn off new AFL teams: Malthouse

By Robert Grant 06/04/2011 05:14:56 PM Comments (0)

Collingwood coach Mick Malthouse says AFL stars deciding whether to join new franchises should not be discouraged by Gold Coast's first-up drubbing.

Malthouse has urged Suns players and those considering a switch to Greater Western Sydney ahead of their entry to the competition in 2012 to be patient.

The job of the Giants' recruiting staff got even tougher when Carlton welcomed the Suns to the big-time with a 119-point battering last weekend.

But Malthouse said players had to understand the new outfits would take time to find their feet.

"That was the first thing I thought of straight after the game," Malthouse said on Wednesday.

"If any player was in two minds - the immediate effect of that could be `yes, this could be quite drawn out'.

"I think if they extended another 12 months or so they will realise that there's a development program in place.

"It's not clear sailing by any stretch of the imagination but we've got to be realistic enough to know that a young side like that is going to be exposed to some heavy traffic."

The Suns fielded 12 debutants against the Blues, alongside big-name recruits such as Gary Ablett, Campbell Brown and Nathan Bock.

The best of the experienced hands were former Brisbane utility Michael Rischitelli and ex-North Melbourne midfielder Daniel Harris, while ruckman Zac Smith, David Swallow and Brandon Matera were the pick of the youngsters.

"You see all these kids running around and you think 'am I going to be part of that?'" said Malthouse.

"I have no doubt that it will question some players but if they're realistic enough they'll have a look at the overall consequences as opposed to one game.

"Rome wasn't built in a day.

"(Suns coach and former Collingwood assistant Guy McKenna) will get them up and they'll be a good football side."

But Malthouse warned of more whippings before the teams sort out their processes and gain confidence.

"They'll suffer some pain, as does every new side," he said.

"I don't think the AFL's intent was that they walk straight into the eight.

"You've got to feel what the competition's like first up, whether it be a (margin of) 119 points or 19 points, a loss is a loss and it's how you rebound."

Malthouse said he anticipated the beating and was not surprised at the outcome.

"The pressure was right off Carlton, their club captain (Chris Judd) was playing in his 200th game," said.

"Every kid would have felt that pressure right throughout that week, as would the committee and coaches.

"They were in the spotlight and it was taken off the opposition."

A day after Gold Coast were belted by the Blues, GWS lost by 96 points to the Sydney Swans' reserves, with former rugby league star Israel Folau failing to gather a possession.

Unlike Gold Coast, the Giants under coach Kevin Sheedy have not recruited any players with AFL experience to bolster their squad in the final year before joining the big league in 2012.

As the Giants have two years to sign uncontracted players from other clubs - compared to just one for the Suns - they could leave many of their big moves until the 2012 post-season.

Three-time Magpies best and fairest winner Dane Swan was linked to GWS before signing a long-term contract extension with Collingwood, while teammates Scott Pendlebury and Dale Thomas are also in the Giants' sights.

GWS have also been linked with gun Melbourne youngster Tom Scully and Adelaide forward Taylor Walker.

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