AFL players to cop fines for covering logo - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

AFL players to cop fines for covering logo

By Robert Grant 01/07/2011 04:16:56 PM Comments (0)

The AFL has warned clubs could face massive fines if players cover up the league logo on their guernseys during their ongoing pay dispute.

AFL boss Andrew Demetriou said regulations provide for penalties of $5000 for each player who masked a logo.

However, Demetriou said he believes the action - understood to be one option considered by the players if they felt the need to protest over the pay dispute - is unlikely to go ahead.

"I don't think that's going to happen. I think that's unfortunate coverage," he said.

"The fact is, there are rules in place and if any logos were covered, for every player who covered it, there's a $5000 per player fine for the clubs.

"I don't think it will come to that. I think that makes good copy but I don't think players genuinely want to see clubs fined.

"As they said the other night, they're playing for their clubs and their supporters, and we respect that."

As the pay dispute rumbles on, Demetriou on Friday announced what he called "the largest sponsorship of any sport in this country" - an extension until 2014 of the deal with major naming rights' partner Toyota.

However, he was quick to deny any link between the guaranteed flow of millions of dollars to the players' demand for a bigger slice of the game's revenue.

Demetriou, in fact, labelled as "disingenuous" the players' suggestions that - with the arrival of new clubs Gold Coast and Greater Western Sydney - the AFL's offer of a three per cent pay rise represents a pay cut.

Demetriou said the league had offered around $1.1 billion, but the players said the deal would barely keep pace with inflation.

"Our view is pretty clear - we want the players to get their fair share," Demetriou said.

"We don't believe philosophically in percentages of revenue, and we haven't changed our view on that," he said.

The AFL Players' Association (AFLPA) said more than 80 per cent of the amount offered by the league would be absorbed by maintaining the current benefits for players without any increases in player payments.

"This means there would be insufficient funds for initiatives such as annuities and improved injury compensation for players," the AFLPA said in a statement.

"The AFL Players' Association rejected that offer at the end of May - a decision affirmed by all AFL players in Wednesday's meeting - coming as it did during a time of unprecedented growth in AFL revenue."

Demetriou insists the players would be better off under the AFL's offer rather than be on the end of a pay cut.

"It's disingenuous to say that's a pay cut. It's just not true. I can't understand how that is a pay cut," he said.

"Our offer, regardless of the two expansion teams, is at least eight per cent if the players choose to take that as a total player payment.

"As we've said, the players have got a $1.1 billion package there, which is $300 million more than last time and, in effect, is nearly a 30 per cent increase in gross terms," Demetriou said.

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