Almanac Footy: Captains Moving Clubs is Bad For the Game

Since 2007 only two club captains have left their club. In 2007, Chris Judd left West Coast and moved back home to Carlton and in 2014 Ryan Griffen shocked the AFL world when he wanted a trade to the Greater Western Sydney Giants. Now at the end of 2018 there is a very high chance that two club captains will leave their club and a captain leaving a club is not a good look for them or for the AFL

Marc Murphy leaving Carlton will be very disappointing if it is him leaving and not getting kicked out of the club. He has been at the club since 2006 and has been a one club man. No one would have thought he was going to leave the club until this season. If Murphy does leave he will go to a team in the premiership window. Melbourne and Geelong are the two front runners for Murphy. If he leaves Carlton it won’t be a good look for him as a player chasing a flag a year after St Kilda legend Nick Riewoldt hung up his boots being a one club player and not playing finals since 2011. No player deserves a flag. You get to a time in your career where you know you’re not going to win a flag so you put your team ahead of yourself. So, if Murphy leaves the Blues it shows that he thinks he is bigger than a club that needs an old leader.

Tom Lynch is so far gone he refers to himself as a former Suns player. Tom Lynch could have been the Matthew Pavlich of the Gold Coast Suns, he could have been the reason it went from a joke of a club to a respectful club but that is hard work and we cannot do that so let’s just take the easy way out. Hawthorn and Richmond are a chance for Lynch but we all know he is going to Collingwood in hopes he can win an easy flag. A lot has been said of the Suns struggle over the last few weeks but maybe walking out with 21 out of 22 players playing for the jumper and that 1 player who isn’t is your captain is not what a growing club need.

The Suns has been a joke since they started in 2011 and so many good players have left them making it harder for the club to grow but under Dew there are signs that show that the Suns might be on the right track but that track isn’t fast enough for 25-year-old Lynch. The last guy who left a Queensland club for Collingwood for a flag was Buckley and he ended up losing to them in 2 straight grand finals. Lynch could have been the Matthew Pavlich of Gold Coast who on Grand Final day sits in his hotel room and cries because all the hard times has finally paid off. Because it’s not a question of if the Suns will play finals one day it’s a question of when.

Two captains in different points of their careers want to leave a club that need them for the selfish reason of winning a flag. It makes both players and the AFL looks like an un-loyal sport where you know deserve a flag.



  1. Citrus Bob says

    Perhaps captains should sign a legal document barring them from being cleared to another club because they can’t win a premiership.
    Mind you I think players should be banned from wanting to go from a bottom club to a side “more likely to win the flag”. Think Frawley from Melbourne to Hawthorn

  2. so do i and winning a flag you had no hard work into is like going to a wedding and you know no one there

  3. Dave Brown says

    It’s the old tug of the footy we thought we grew up with butting into modern reality, Liam. I don’t think it’s fair that Carlton would be allowed to kick Murphy out but he’d not be allowed to go without their permission. The AFL is a disloyal competition – the only remaining loyalties are the fans to the clubs and whatever the AFL puts in place to retain some semblance of an imagined past. I find it increasingly hard to argue that players shouldn’t have the same right to change employers as any other employee does.

  4. Len Rodwell says

    I am sorry, but this article is just wrong. I admire one club players, but players should have the right to move as clubs have no hesitation in moving them on on.

Leave a Comment