Freo face more changes at the top
Fremantle could start next season without two of the board members who ratified Mark Harvey’s controversial sacking as coach.
Richard Goyder yesterday resigned his position at the club after becoming the first West Australian to be appointed to the AFL Commission since Terry Connor QC finished his role in 2000.
The 51-year-old has been on Fremantle’s board since 2006 and is the chief executive officer and managing director of Wesfarmers. He is the first of two AFL appointments after the retirements of Bob Hammond and Graeme John.
Goyder’s replacement will be head hunted by the club and WA Football Commission. Fremantle said they were seeking someone with the same level of experience as Goyder.
Inaugural captain Ben Allan is up for re-election and must be voted for by the members to retain his position. Allan has been a popular choice among the members, and was elected unopposed in 2007 and 2009.
But he faces a test following the anger that accompanied Harvey’s sacking.
Nominations for the member’s elected position will open next Tuesday and the election will run from October 24-November 21.
“I am going to nominate again,” Allan said. “If other people want to nominate, they have the right to do so.”
Goyder and Allan yesterday revealed that most of the Fremantle board was unaware that St Kilda coach Ross Lyon had been approached until late in the process.
Chief executive Steve Rosich has said he contacted Lyon on September 4 but the negotiations didn’t start until days before his appointment.
AFL chief executive Andrew Demetriou criticised Fremantle over Harvey’s sacking, but Goyder said he wouldn’t have a problem working alongside the league boss.
“Andrew and I get along very well. I wouldn’t be joining the commission if I didn’t have confidence in Andrew,” Goyder said.
“The downside in this appointment is having to step down from the Fremantle board.
“But I do so feeling good about the club, the president, the board and the CEO. I think we’ve got a terrific coach.”
Fremantle members also will vote on whether to retain the club’s song, switch to a reworked version or replace it.
The club’s new jumper became an issue in last year’s election because incumbent board member Kate Grieve was part of the committee which changed the design. But she retained her position comfortably against 12 other candidates.
The WAFC must also make a significant appointment after chief executive officer Wayne Bradshaw resigned yesterday.
Bradshaw has spent 19 years working for the commission including 10 years as CEO. He will stay until Christmas.
“I think it was time to look at my future,” Bradshaw said.
“Footy’s in good shape so now is the time to look at the next stage of my career.
“I don’t have anything else lined up. I wasn’t comfortable looking at options while still in this job.”
WAFC director of facilities and planning Geoff Glass filled in when Bradshaw was on holidays earlier this year but the commission is expected to conduct an extensive search for a replacement.