What Has Gone Wrong With Football?

swoodleyswoodley 2014 Blitz Tipping Champ and 2009 FLR Winner
edited November 2016 in Non Essendon Stuff
In the last few days, three talented young footballers have turned their back on the game that they grew up loving for what appear to be non-football related matters (eg injuries, lack of for, opportunities etc).

Jarrod Garlett (Gold Coast), Jonathon Marsh (Collingwood) and Jaden McGrath (Brisbane) have all chosen to "retire"

All three are returning to their home states and, seemingly, giving up on their boyhood dreams.

Dane Swan recently spoke about how the fun has gone out of the game with the high level of professionalism required now...monitoring sleep time, food intake, liquid intake, skin folds, having to be available virtually 24/7/365.

Is professionalism and big business (the chase for the mighty dollar) slowly killing our great game?

What do you think?

Just to clarify, I was asking the question from the perspective of these young guys leaving the AFL...not from our own perspectives.

I'm wondering what has gone wrong that has made them give up on their dreams
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Comments

  • 100%, and a lot of those guys are jumping from amateur commitment levels to professional level with no intermediate stage
    I think as well in AFL the culture is to baby talented guys a bit more and hope you end up showing the commitment, whereas other sports that I follow the commitment typically comes first

    It would be interesting to hear from someone who follows some other sports very closely to find out if it is a similar situation
  • DonsForEverDonsForEver Life-long Bomber Supporter
    Good point, Swoodley.

    The cynic in me wonders if all three breached three strikes on the AFL's drugs policy and have been "managed" out of the game.

    I think I prefer your scenario.
  • Sameolds2010Sameolds2010 Everything is awesome
    edited November 2016
    It should fold and become a museum for rude art exhibits therefore rationalising why a bunch of sheltered **** can get so much overexposure and acclaim.
  • David J RichardsonDavid J Richardson Relevant Avatar King
    Why did you feel the need to mention Swan, Swoodley? :*
  • 1. The corruptfl using the media as a means of big brother in order to police the players, aka "role models (what a load of excrement). This is why there's no more "fun" for them
    2. Big fat cash cow bosses who only think with their wallets
    3. Professionalism
    4. Supporters getting progressively dumber
    5. More brainwashing
    6. Clubs getting more gutless
    7. The corruptfl eating alive the vfl/vfa because they are a bunch of lazy tightarse c's who didn't want to start their own reserves, though happy to pump money into point number 9.
    8. Favourtism of teams, including bribery and collusion with umpires
    9. Souless expansion clubs with american nicknames and shitty jumpers
    10. Moronic, lieing, **** commentators who are where they are because they are good at being wankers and jobz for da boyz.
    11. Rule changing
    12. Political tokenism crap to pretend they care

    Best thing about football is this forum. Everything else can fark off.
  • Also, I'd like to add that it is filtering down to local level with guys playing 4th divvy basically getting clubs to bid on them for their services
  • My sentiments exactly bomber_girl.

    I love reading your posts...so succinct and eloquently put but most of all you really know how to hit the nail on the head, great work.
  • True_Value_BlitzerTrue_Value_Blitzer Irrelevant. Always
    Yep sadly something that was once great is being progressively ruined
  • swoodleyswoodley 2014 Blitz Tipping Champ and 2009 FLR Winner

    Why did you feel the need to mention Swan, Swoodley? :*

    He was one of the last of the old breed and he spoke about this when he retired (and it stuck in my mind)

  • Well said BG. I would add:

    13: Sunday twighlight games
    14: Peripheral "entertainment" (read short snippets of supposedly inspirational music*)
    15: Being forced to pay for reserved seating when a stadium is half fkng empty


    * Even if the songs were to my taste, who wants to hear a few bars in isolation during the middle of a game?
  • swoodleyswoodley 2014 Blitz Tipping Champ and 2009 FLR Winner
    edited November 2016
    Just to clarify, I was asking the question from the perspective of these young guys leaving the AFL...not from our own perspectives.

    I'm wondering what has gone wrong that has made them give up on their dreams
  • edited November 2016
    Elite footballers of the 50's, 60's, 70's and 80's had a great life balance of playing at the top level, work and family life in those eras.

    They would train 2-3 times a week, play on Saturdays and Sunday recovery sessions consisted of sitting around a keg of beer and choofing down a few durries (or an entire packet) and just shoot the breeze with one another about the previous day's game or their high jinx of the night before.

    The game for them wasn't all consuming as it is today.

    They still had a life outside of the game with their work or studies and were a lot better equipped to handle life after football when retirement from the game eventually came around.

    They could relax with a beer or 27 after a match without any repercussions and having to stress about what it would do to their skinfolds or their behaviour or antics being filmed and/or reported back to the club on a Monday morning.

    They got to play hard on and off the field and actually enjoy themselves whilst doing it without it being a high pressure job for them.

    Also the media would find positive things to report on about a star player's performance, and laud them for it, than to constantly deride or cut down them down and try and heap extra pressure or misery on a footballer like they try to these days, and that's before they get to mentioning anything about their on field performances.

    The constant, invasive scrutiny of a footballer's life would be off putting and distressing for a number of these guys too I would feel.

    Off course there would be people pointing to the fact that they earn a fucktonne load of money more than the average Australian worker does and that they should be thankful and priveleged for the opportunity that's been afforded to them, but really most of these kids are on base wage, not having earned a hell of a lot more than that due to playing very few or no games at all( hence, very little in the way of match payments or bonuses for reaching certain goals).

    I don't blame these kids, and when you think about it, they still are only kids forced to make adult decisions about their futures in the short to mid term of their lives, wanting to get out of the system and possibly move back closer to home to play suburban or country footy with their mates in a more relaxed environment.

    Some of these decisions are even for health or life threatening reasons, such as the case of the Crows player Sam Shaw, who has been forced out of the game due to concussion issues.

    These guys are now realising that the game, as much as they love it and have a passion for it, just ain't that important to them anymore and that there's more to life than just being an elite sports person.

    It's interesting times ahead for the rulers of our great game because not only do they have to stave off competition from other sports, they may just be starting to see the beginning of an even bigger issue of just trying to retain the young players that are already in the game.
  • Sameolds2010Sameolds2010 Everything is awesome

    Also, I'd like to add that it is filtering down to local level with guys playing 4th divvy basically getting clubs to bid on them for their services

    It's been that way in ammos since the dawn of time.
  • What's wrong with football? We haven't won a flag for 16 years and we just got a wooden spoon.

    I'm sure the Bulldogs supporters aren't currently discussing this same topic.
  • Paul Peos said:

    What's wrong with football? We haven't won a flag for 16 years and we just got a wooden spoon.

    I'm sure the Bulldogs supporters aren't currently discussing this same topic.

    They may have the previous 60 odd years before though.

  • Cadel Evans today on SEN discussed this issue in relation to cycling - Spoke about young gun riders who turn professional early ( around 20 which is a young for a cyclist ) who start off their career in a blaze of glory and have everything handed to them on a platter - Then when the results dry up, these cyclists lack the LIFE SKILLS, to turn around the situation - Think this also applies to footy.
  • DeckhamDeckham Going down swinging
    edited November 2016
    '3' is not a big sample size to support the argument.
    Having said that, I'd like to throw in how much I hate the media.
    Does that fit in here? Good.
  • JBOMBERJBOMBER Top Bloke - just ask me
    swoodley said:

    Just to clarify, I was asking the question from the perspective of these young guys leaving the AFL...not from our own perspectives.

    I'm wondering what has gone wrong that has made them give up on their dreams

    You're assuming that these players dreamt of playing AFL. Maybe for some its just a job or something they just happened to be good at. Wasn't it Wingard who basically said he doesn't really have a passion for the game? Maybe its what they thought they wanted before they got to actually see the reality of it. The demands of training might simply be more than some can handle & they think its easier to walk away.
  • 1. The corruptfl using the media as a means of big brother in order to police the players, aka "role models (what a load of excrement). This is why there's no more "fun" for them
    2. Big fat cash cow bosses who only think with their wallets
    3. Professionalism
    4. Supporters getting progressively dumber
    5. More brainwashing
    6. Clubs getting more gutless
    7. The corruptfl eating alive the vfl/vfa because they are a bunch of lazy tightarse c's who didn't want to start their own reserves, though happy to pump money into point number 9.
    8. Favourtism of teams, including bribery and collusion with umpires
    9. Souless expansion clubs with american nicknames and shitty jumpers
    10. Moronic, lieing, **** commentators who are where they are because they are good at being wankers and jobz for da boyz.
    11. Rule changing
    12. Political tokenism crap to pretend they care

    Best thing about football is this forum. Everything else can fark off.

    Knew football was stuffed when the league was pumping barrowloads into the Swans and Oakley started referring to the promotion of football in Sydney as "entertainment.
  • Maybe the reality did not live up to the dream. Good on them for recognising the reality early and moving on for a life that does put you under a microscope.
  • edited November 2016

    1. The corruptfl using the media as a means of big brother in order to police the players, aka "role models (what a load of excrement). This is why there's no more "fun" for them
    2. Big fat cash cow bosses who only think with their wallets
    3. Professionalism
    4. Supporters getting progressively dumber
    5. More brainwashing
    6. Clubs getting more gutless
    7. The corruptfl eating alive the vfl/vfa because they are a bunch of lazy tightarse c's who didn't want to start their own reserves, though happy to pump money into point number 9.
    8. Favourtism of teams, including bribery and collusion with umpires
    9. Souless expansion clubs with american nicknames and shitty jumpers
    10. Moronic, lieing, **** commentators who are where they are because they are good at being wankers and jobz for da boyz.
    11. Rule changing
    12. Political tokenism crap to pretend they care

    Best thing about football is this forum. Everything else can fark off.

    Too good just to "like". bomber_girl nailed it!
  • 3 blokes out of 800 choose to change careers.
  • We need someone to make football great again.
  • IceTempleIceTemple Always Elite
    A lot more than 3 lost their jobs and it wasn't their choice, they wanted to stay. Quite a few had to change location to keep their job too and did so because they love doing it. Some changed location because they lost their love in the current location and want it back.

    Football has changed from the 60's, 70's and 80's but to be honest, having watched that era, I much prefer todays game to that mud-infested kick to kick game.
  • RebootReboot If you don't pay your exorcist you can get repossessed.
    edited November 2016
    Professional sport is a pretty tough gig, and not for everyone. It actually surprises me that more people don't get drafted to the top level and then decide 'this is not for me', and drop back to a lower, more casual level.
  • David J RichardsonDavid J Richardson Relevant Avatar King
    IceTemple said:


    Football has changed from the 60's, 70's and 80's but to be honest, having watched that era, I much prefer todays game to that mud-infested kick to kick game.

    But not the 90's, I take it?
  • Serenity NowSerenity Now Televisionary
    For every three players who turn their back on the game, there are hundreds desperate to be a part of it.

    Reality is the professionalism that crushes the heart out of the game, also keeps it alive. The sport doesn't survive on fun. The professionalism is required because the club and the AFL demand that if you want to be at the top level, you have to be the best of yourself.

    Western Bulldogs will probably get a massive boost with their Premiership win. And Premierships don't just happen.

    I'm not getting bent out of shape on Dane Swan's views on "professionalism". I could've guessed his position without a lot of forethought.
  • Houli DooliHouli Dooli Half Forward Flanker
    90s were the best footy years and start of 2000. Good wage, good money and could still have a beer. Felt like was after the wayne carey shenanigans media started looking for off field incidents more and interrupting private lives etc.
  • SplitRoundSplitRound peddant
    edited November 2016
    Separate to the growing demands of professionalism, it's probably also true that there were guys who were deciding it wasn't for them even 10 years ago and it just wasn't reported. It wasn't that long ago that there wasn't an article for every single guy who got delisted, because that wasn't how the news cycle worked. Who would know if one of those names in the list of players had decided he wasn't interested any more?

    McGrath and Marsh were both picks in the 70s, with less than 20 games between them. Without the scrutiny of modern media, 99% of people wouldn't have batted an eyelid if they'd seen those names in an article buried in the sports section of the hun summarising list changes. Supporters of their clubs might have said "he looked pretty good when he played I thought" and only the most diehard of supporters or football nerds would have known they were contracted (because there wouldn't have been an article in the paper about a second year player who'd barely played a game getting a one year contract extension) and been curious about what had happened.

    Edit: my point being it's difficult to know as an outsider whether anything has actually changed with regards to guys deciding to call it quits, or whether it's just our awareness of it.
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