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View Poll Results: What will you do about your membership

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29. You may not vote on this poll
  • Let it ride - the club can keep it

    25 86.21%
  • WAit for the Club Options and then decide

    4 13.79%
  • I need the funds - ask for my money back

    0 0%
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  1. #31
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Quote Originally Posted by Twodogs View Post
    Up until James Hird hit Essendon had more money than they could poke a stick at. They would have been well suited to sit this storm out if they hadn't wasted all that money on pointless legal action and defending the indefensible.

    I wonder how that's going for them now?
    You will love this sob story by Slobbo yesterday:

    Coronavirus crisis becomes double blow at Essendon following drugs ban debacle

    Essendon knows a crisis. Like all other 17 clubs, the Bombers have been gutted both financially and emotionally.

    For the Bombers, it is the second time in what is now a decade of doom.

    No one will reach for a tissue, of course, as football, Australia and the world confronts the economic tsunami delivered by COVID-19, but the Bombers just can’t get their heads above water.

    The first wave was the supplements debacle.

    The second wave, and this is much more devouring, is the coronavirus.

    The drugs saga cost the club an estimated $20 million. The 2020 season could cost Essendon, and every club for that matter, $15 million or more.

    All 18 clubs face a bleak future financially.

    Some are worse than others. Take St Kilda, which has a mountain of debt.

    Some have worked to the bone to reduce debt. In five years, Carlton has reduced its burden from $9 million to $3 million.

    They all will recover. Who knows how long it will take, maybe a decade, but recover they will.

    Emotionally, that’s the real issue. Last week 18 clubs sacked, or made redundant, or stood down 80 per cent of their staff.

    Brisbane boss Greg Swann described it as the worst day of his professional life.

    Dons chief executive Xavier Campbell didn’t disagree. “It was gut-wrenching,’’ he said.

    He was Essendon’s chief executive through the hellish 2014-16 seasons, 2016 being when 34 Essendon players were suspended for 12 months.

    That season, with top-ups and a new coach, was unprecedented.

    Campbell won’t compare the economic situations of then and now, other than to say both required “critical and urgent’’ decisions.

    The human cost, however, is unbearably distressing.

    “We’re such a human-based industry,’’ he said.

    “Clubs ask so much more of their people in sport. You ride the wave of emotion a lot more than you probably do in traditional corporate businesses.

    “In the stands, you’re hugging fellow staff members after a big win, you see board members hugging each other, and everyone getting super excited. With that emotional ride, when things don’t go well on-field, and I’ve seen it off field a couple of times now, that creates a challenging landscape.

    “Because it means so much.

    “Football clubs are such an important sense of identity for a lot of people.”

    FOOTY FAMILY
    Football clubs must be unreal environments to work in. The atmosphere is determined by what happens in a two-hour span on any given weekend.

    A win bring smiles and confidence. A loss, the opposite.

    The exhilaration of turning up for work versus the despair and anxiety of working there.

    Most people are paid unders to work in the industry.

    The do it because they love it. The potential of having the best working year of your life must be a tease.

    One executive, not at Essendon, said staff were hooked on the emotion and rhythm of footy.

    “It was like punting. You lose, and you dust yourself off and go back. If you win, you float through the front door,’’ he said.

    He cried when he told his staff they had to be stood down.

    “It’s a family inside footy clubs,” he said

    There’s one family made up of three extended families — the players, the coaches and the administration.

    Last week, the players got a small slice of joy with their pay deal.

    But for the coaches and the administration, it was a bloodletting.

    Campbell had to stand down or make redundant good people with kids and mortgages at a time of incredible uncertainty in the workforce.

    “We had no choice but to make big decisions,” he said.

    “And it’s not the fault of those individuals, it’s through a matter of circumstances.

    “That’s heartbreaking when you see the impact on those people, people who are loyal and dedicated.”

    This period is different to the drugs saga.

    Then, the Bombers were isolated under a tonne of bricks and a tonne of media coverage.

    Some of it was self-inflicted, some of it not, but all of it was complex.

    It was four years of fighting the AFL, the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority, lawyers and at times themselves.

    HUMAN TOLL
    In the middle was the human cost — the players.

    “That was challenging because so much was out of their control and I personally felt a lot of it,” Campbell said.

    “How I can describe it? They certainly didn’t do anything overtly out of the line.

    ‘‘And it’s the period of uncertainty, when you’re not clear on the direction or the time frame for which something is going to take place.

    “Which is exactly where it is now with respect to the 2020 season and how long the virus will impact society and how long we’re going to be shut out of games.

    “Even reflecting on ’14, ’15 and ’16, once we knew the time frame associated with the process, it still wasn’t easy, but it was easier.”

    The “Essendon 34” were banned in January 2016, the same month the coronavirus started infiltrating the world this year.

    Four of the suspended players remain on the current list: Dyson Heppell, Tom Bellchambers, Cale Hooker and Michael Hurley.

    Others, such as Joe Daniher, Zach Merrett and David Zaharakis, played before, during and after the drugs ban.

    If football doesn’t return this season, Heppell, Bellchambers, Hooker and Hurley will have a second season swiped from their careers.

    “I haven’t had discussions with them about how they feel about this and its context to their careers,” Campbell said.

    “But I know they care about the club and the young guys not being able to play, and they care about the fact they are building something and they are confident in what they’re building.

    “Those four guys love the game and to not be able to do that … that’s why 2016 was heartbreaking.’’

    In 2016, the players explored life, business, travel and the community.

    This is different again.

    “It’s a societal issue, where there are so many restrictions,’’ Campbell said.

    “It’s not like you can take advantage of anything other the fact you get this intimate opportunity to connect with your family. It’s staring us all in the face.’’

    Campbell said the drugs saga showed it was important to be ‘‘really clear and honest’’ with information about the potential costs of the coronavirus.

    He held staff meeting on March 11, a day after the club chief executives and presidents had a meeting with the AFL.

    Less than two weeks later, the worst fears were doubled, if not tripled.

    BOMBERS ARMY
    Then there’s the fans, the lifeblood. Campbell says every fan is in it together.

    “When going through adversity, it strips layers back to the pure nature as to why you love the game and why you love the club,’’ he said.

    ‘‘I saw that last time with us.

    “The people, the support, and even though it wasn’t what they lined up for and what they wanted, the members rallied.

    “I’ve got no doubt that’s what will happen again, not just for the red and black, but for every club.

    ‘‘The members are the life blood of footy clubs.

    “It’s not possible without the players and it’s not possible without the members.

    “We’ve known that, but it’s absolutely hitting us in the face right now.”

  2. Thanks bornadog thanked for this post
  3. #32
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Where's the bucket?
    Our 1954 premiership players are our heroes, and it has to be said that Charlie was their hero.

  4. Likes Grantysghost, bornadog liked this post
  5. #33
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    How's the timing with the notice that they want fans to dig deep...…...spew central.

  6. #34
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    They should have been kicked out of the comp for good and replaced by Tasmania in 2016. Dirty, thieving, cheating bastards.
    "You've got no fear of The Underdog, that's why you will not survive"
    - Spoon, 2007
    - Western Bulldogs, 2016

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  8. #35
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Quote Originally Posted by Sedat View Post
    They should have been kicked out of the comp for good and replaced by Tasmania in 2016. Dirty, thieving, cheating bastards.
    AFL is gutless.
    Premierships: AFL 1954, 2016 VFA - 1898,99,1900, 1908, 1913, 1919-20, 1923-24, VFL: 2014, 2016 . Champions of Victoria 1924. AFLW - 2018.

  9. #36
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    I would've preferred that the Hun put that print into supporting a GoFundMe for Roberta Williams whose husband and bread winner isn't around anymore and is doing it tough even more now. I've got more sympathy for Roberta than Essendon. At least she admitted to the drug enterprise that was being run.

    #HangToughRoberta
    #DigDeepForRoberta

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  11. #37
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    In the stands, you’re hugging fellow staff members after a big win, you see board members hugging each other, and everyone getting super excited. With that emotional ride, when things don’t go well on-field, and I’ve seen it off field a couple of times now, that creates a challenging landscape."
    How the *!*!*!*! would he know what happens after a big win?
    WASH YOUR HANDS!!!

  12. #38
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Anyone see Eddie dodging the question of refunds with Tony Jones?

  13. #39
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Quote Originally Posted by hujsh View Post
    Anyone see Eddie dodging the question of refunds with Tony Jones?
    He was determined not to give a headline. Jones wanted a yes or no answer, Ed was not going to give him that.
    Start each day with a task completed. Find someone to help you through life. Respect everyone.
    Know that life is not fair and that you will fail often. But if take you take some risks, step up when the times are toughest, face down the bullies, lift up the downtrodden and never, ever give up — if you do these things, then the next generation and the generations that follow will live in a world far better than the one we have today.
    And what started here will indeed have changed the world — for the better.

  14. #40
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Refunds is the wrong question.
    What should I tell her? She's going to ask.

  15. #41
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Are Golf Club players asking for their membership back, or Gym members, tennis club members, racing clubs, MCC members etc etc.

    Just asking?

    The RACV Club has said memberships will be suspended and the months added on to the renewal date.

    I think clubs need to give something back to those that stick with the club. If someone needs the funds, then so be it, there should be no hesitation by the club.
    Premierships: AFL 1954, 2016 VFA - 1898,99,1900, 1908, 1913, 1919-20, 1923-24, VFL: 2014, 2016 . Champions of Victoria 1924. AFLW - 2018.

  16. #42
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Quote Originally Posted by bornadog View Post
    I think clubs need to give something back to those that stick with the club. If someone needs the funds, then so be it, there should be no hesitation by the club.
    I doubt there would be.
    Start each day with a task completed. Find someone to help you through life. Respect everyone.
    Know that life is not fair and that you will fail often. But if take you take some risks, step up when the times are toughest, face down the bullies, lift up the downtrodden and never, ever give up — if you do these things, then the next generation and the generations that follow will live in a world far better than the one we have today.
    And what started here will indeed have changed the world — for the better.

  17. #43
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Footy fans urged to retain memberships but will get refunds if requested, Gillon McLachlan says

    Footy fans will be given refunds if requested but have been urged to retain their memberships to support clubs financially amid the coronavirus crisis.

    AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan confirmed supporters can ask for their money back from clubs if they’re struggling financially as the community grapples with job losses and financial hardship.

    While some have suggested the money from 2020 membership should be treated as a donation to their clubs, others will need access to that money given current circumstances.

    “Of course. If they need it, they can (get refunds). But clearly we’d love them to stay because our industry is in a battle and our clubs are in a battle to get through and the membership is their lifeblood,” McLachlan said on ABC Radio Melbourne.

    “But all I’d say is, I understand the pain going on out there and people need to make their own decisions and clearly if they want it (a refund), they can.

    “But I know our members understand how big their contribution of membership is to their clubs.”

    The issue of refunds for memberships exploded on Wednesday night when Collingwood president Eddie McGuire had a fiery argument on television with journalist Tony Jones.

    McLachlan said fans need to make their own decisions based on whether they can personally afford to keep their membership.

    But he stressed how important revenue from the sale of memberships is for the survival of clubs.

    “The first thing is about the individual and their circumstances, we’ve got people who have to stay safe and get through this tough period. The second part of that is clearly the footy clubs are reliant on club membership,” McLachlan said.

    “So those who have been making their contribution because of that connection, that loyalty for so long in time, if they’re able to keep their membership it goes a long way to keeping the club sustainable.

    “In the end people have got to make decisions based on their circumstances and where they’re at in every sense and staying safe and getting through this economically is the priority.

    “But after that, for those who their footy club is almost part of their family, if they’re able to maintain their membership and keep going, it will go a long way to getting their clubs through this.”

    Western Bulldogs have already refunded some club memberships after being approached by fans experiencing financial hardships.

    Chief executive Ameet Bains said if there is an overwhelming request for refunds, however, clubs will be in big trouble.

    “If you look at the major revenue streams that clubs rely on, membership is one of those key ones,” Bains said on SEN.

    “ … if you look at it in purer financial terms it would be a significant body blow for clubs and potentially fatal for a number of clubs as well.

    “The question of hardships is a different one and I think everyone is sympathetic about that … we continue to work with anyone who is affected in that way.

    “From our own experience, those individuals that have approached us with hardships or concerns, we’ve been happy to accommodate on individual basis.”

    But supporters have also continued to show their support, with the Bulldogs continuing to sell memberships despite no games currently being played.

    “In the last week we’ve sold 60 new memberships,” Bains said.


    The AFL season’s shut down period will last until at least May 31.

    There are concerns about whether the coronavirus outbreak will mean no football will be played at all this year, with the league already compressing the season to 17 rounds.

    McLachlan said there’s no rush to start the season the week of June 1, declaring there is room for the restart date to push out and still play a 17-round home-and-away season.

    There are no plans at this stage to cut the season back even further.

    “What we’re saying is: OK, what is the drop dead date to get 17 rounds away? And it’s certainly later than June 1. We can get our season away later than that,” McLachlan said.

    “It may get to the point that we need to look at different models beyond 17 but at the moment we have given ourselves that flexibility to play 17 rounds. We’ve got a really united industry, a united group of players and clubs that it’s plausible to get 17 rounds away almost maybe in less than 17 weeks if we compress a little bit. Maybe we can pick up one or two weeks there across the course of 17 weeks.

    “We have time beyond June 1 to get 17 rounds away.”

  18. #44
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Quote Originally Posted by bornadog View Post
    Are Golf Club players asking for their membership back, or Gym members, tennis club members, racing clubs, MCC members etc etc.

    Just asking?

    The RACV Club has said memberships will be suspended and the months added on to the renewal date.

    I think clubs need to give something back to those that stick with the club. If someone needs the funds, then so be it, there should be no hesitation by the club.
    My gym suspended all membership direct debits when they shut. I know not all gyms are the same though.

  19. #45
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    Re: AFL clubs hope to have membership options within a fortnight

    Quote Originally Posted by Axe Man View Post
    My gym suspended all membership direct debits when they shut. I know not all gyms are the same though.
    I think there is some legal issues at play with direct debits and many gyms have been forced to suspend payments whether they really wanted to or not.
    Our 1954 premiership players are our heroes, and it has to be said that Charlie was their hero.

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