Carlton voices concerns over Essendon saga

Carlton has joined the growing chorus of disenchanted clubs concerned at the detrimental effect Essendon’s drug saga is having on the competition.

Incoming president Mark LoGiudice said he had until now left to Stephen Kernahan any talks between the clubs keen to bring forward a meeting of the presidents who wanted to confront the situation. But Kernahan’s successor did not rule out approaching the AFL with his concerns.

”My view is that if it drags on to the point that it affects the brand of the AFL then we are all damaged,” LoGiudice said. ”Has it gone on too long? Anything that affects the AFL brand is the time when we have an issue. I don’t know what their legal strategy is and I don’t know what their legal advice is but it becomes an issue when it affects the other clubs.”

However, LoGiudice distanced himself from the disappointment aired by Geelong president Colin Carter this week regarding the new equalisation measures.

Geelong will be charged a revenue tax of $300,000 next season, while the Blues face a comparative $290,000 hike. This compares with Collingwood’s capped $500,000 tax.

”We shouldn’t be worried about the $290,000 that Carlton is being taxed,” LoGiudice said. ”We should be aiming to be a bigger and better club and pay $500,000 as well.”

And while the Blues remain a keen contender for Good Friday games into the future, LoGiudice said Carlton’s focus next season was to push to play the season-opener against Richmond. That fixture is expected to fall on the eve of the holy day at the MCG.

”In an ideal world we’d like to play a blockbuster game every week,” said LoGiudice, who said he would continue the club’s push for more MCG home games. ”But we’re focused on playing Richmond in the season-opener and we’d love to see that set in stone.”

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