AFL great Kevin Sheedy has announced that he will return to the Essendon Bombers, this time as general manager.
The former player and premiership winning coach was farewelled by the Greater Western Sydney Giants on Tuesday, after a seven year tenure at the club.
Sheedy was instrumental in the AFL’s 2009 venture into NRL heartland, overseeing the launch of the Giants and contributing to their strategic vision and community relationships in addition to his coaching duties.
Retiring from coaching in 2013, Sheedy sought a more executive role and is credited with turning the Giant’s gamble into a more competitive club.
In a press conference Sheedy had some short words for those who doubted the Sydney venture.
“They’ve had a lot of knocks in the head and they don’t realise, these guys like Wayne Carey – they have no idea that this club is going to be a powerhouse. It won’t be right now, but it will be in the future.”
Now in the position of being a life member of two AFL clubs, Bombers fans are keen for the familiar face to make a mark in the executive ranks.
Speaking with Michael Warner over the weekend, Sheedy addressed what many believed to be the elephant in the room – the fans disillusionment after the ASADA scandal.
“I’ve been away a long time so I can’t really comment on what has gone on. What I do know is the fans deserve some help, they’ve had a decent whack from everybody.”
Sheedy, spent 27 years at Essendon, and coached the team to 4 premiership flags between 1981 and 2007.
He is considered AFL royalty and the clubs excitement at this new appointment is evident as they await a ruling on 34 players accused of doping. CEO Xavier Campbell spoke of his excitement of Sheedy returning.
“Kevin is part of the fabric of our proud Club, he paved the way for social change, broke down barriers and means so much to so many generations of loyal and proud Essendon supporters.” – Alice Boyd
Top photo from Tom Reynolds’ Flickr photostream.