When Leigh Matthews, a calm, considered and intelligent master of the game, came out and said “I wonder what’s going on behind the scenes at Hawthorn”, it became obvious the club is not the perfect place it’s claimed to be in recent years.
Insiders are saying that there is a feeling of ‘job done’ among the players who have multiple premiership medallions hanging round their necks, that they’ve got no more to prove and are ready to sit back on their laurels and get fat.
Basically, they’re as ‘over Hawthorn’ as the rest of us.
Matthews’ questioning of the culture came days after Sam Mitchell and Jordan Lewis revealed their respective exits from the club weren’t the mutually happy and perfectly managed moves they were made out to be, and Alastair Clarkson admitted he had wanted the veterans to stay.
The single-mindedness of the club to bring in Jaeger O’Meara no matter what the cost, and it was an excessively high price, has created rifts that were clear to see coming as veterans took umbrage at the losing of Lewis and Mitchell while younger players saw their long-awaited pay rises disappear into Jaeger’s package.
And the appointment of Jarryd Roughead as captain – surely the feel-good story of the year so far – hasn’t got all in brown and gold feeling good, as Hodge’s change in attitude would seem to attest.
Things will change once the season kicks off, but whether playing for premiership points focuses the Hawks on football or widens the cracks that are starting to open remains to be seen and will be interesting to watch.
Source: Sporting News