'That's personal': Eddie McGuire in fiery on-air clash with AFL journos

Sam Goodwin
Sports Editor
Eddie McGuire clashed with Caroline Wilson and Sam McClure. Image: Footy Classified.

Eddie McGuire has been taken to task by Caroline Wilson and Sam McClure over his controversial comments regarding Jack Steven’s stabbing.

McGuire caused controversy last week when he called for Geelong to make all the details of Steven’s recent stabbing public.

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On Wednesday night on Footy Classified, McGuire was caught in a heated debate with AFL journos Wilson and McClure over his suggestion that Geelong was wrong to have coach Chris Scott front up at a press conference to address the police investigation, without actually providing any information about what happened to Steven.

“Don’t get up and scold the media for speculating and then say, ‘You are speculating and I think that your speculation is wrong’. All that does is invite more speculation,” McGuire said on Wednesday night.

The Collingwood boss said journalists should have pressed Steven for more information when he returned to training earlier this week.

However that caused Wilson to suggest McGuire was using double standards after earlier this year saying journalists would have “brow beaten” Lachie Hunter “until he cries” if made to front the media over his drink-driving scandal.

“The guy has just been through a huge ordeal where he could have potentially lost his life,” McClure said.

“I understand that you and Caro did this for a living decades, but the media relations game has changed since then. If Geelong don't want us to ask him about something that's personal.”

McGuire shot back: “Who do you work for, Geelong? Or is your job to go and get the truth as a journo?”

“If Sam McClure walked into a newsroom any time since they invented the Caxton Press, and didn't ask the question, you'd be saying, 'Son, there's the car get in it and don't come back'. That's his job.”

McClure: “You can't have it both ways Eddie.”

McGuire: “Yes you can! Maybe things have changed and maybe I'm a dinosaur. But I can promise you if that media conference had have been played out in front of Mike Sheahan, Caroline Wilson, Trevor Grant, Peter McFarlane, 'Curly' Carter, Rob Astbury, hopefully me or Tony Jones, somebody would have had a follow up.”

SM: That's fine Eddie, but it's not those days anymore.

EM: Oh, what is it? You're sending out tweets?

SM: You can't be a part of the current media and then criticise the new generation.

EM: Mate, I can do whatever I like because I actually ask questions.

Wilson actually tried to throw to an ad break as McGuire and McClure continued to squabble, the pair still exchanging words as music played over the top.

Jack Steven returned to Geelong training on Monday. (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)

Caroline Wilson suggests McGuire double standards

Wilson also played footage of McGuire’s comments about Hunter from last month, while also questioning Collingwood’s refusal to have Dayne Beams talk to the media.

“Isn’t that fairly similar to Jack Steven,” Wilson questioned McGuire about his comments on Hunter.

“Why are we protecting Lachie Hunter and not Jack Steven? It’s exactly the same.”

To which McGuire said: “What I said was this: don't have a press conference.”

“I would have thought that Geelong could have called a press conference, said before they called the press conference that they weren't going to answer any questions about Steven and everyone would have respected it.

“If it was a door-stop, then he can quite rightly say, 'Get out of my way, I'm not doing it', but when you have a media conference, you're inviting the world in to ask.

“Once you actually open it up in a press conference, then it's actually open season to ask the questions.

“The point I was making was don't bring it up, and if you are going to bring it up and then open the conjecture, then you probably need to give some answers.”

Steven said he felt “nice and healthy” as he returned to Geelong's headquarters on Monday, a little more than a week after he was hospitalised with a stab wound.

The midfielder fronted for training, with AFL players were set to resume full-contact drills for the first time since the competition shutdown ended.

with AAP