Explosive document emerges in Eddie McGuire's war with David Koch

Sam Goodwin
·Sports Editor
·4-min read
Eddie McGuire, pictured here during a Collingwood game in 2019.
Kane Cornes showed Eddie McGuire a document allegedly showing he agreed to allow Port Adelaide to wear the 'prison bars' guernsey on an annual basis. Image: Channel Nine/Getty

Eddie McGuire has threatened to take David Koch to court as the war over Port Adelaide's 'prison bar' guernsey rages on.

McGuire and Koch have been feuding for months over the latter's request to the AFL for Port to wear the black and white strip more often.

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The club wore the 'prison bars' guernsey during its days in the SANFL, before switching to teal, white and black when it joined the AFL in 1997.

Former Collingwood president McGuire doesn't want a bar of the idea, saying the Magpies are the only club who should be wearing black and white.

But Koch and Port Adelaide want to be able to wear their historic guernseys whenever they play Adelaide in the traditional 'Showdown' rivalry clash.

Speaking on Wednesday night, Port Adelaide chairman Koch hit out at the AFL for their delay in answering the request, with the Power and Crows set to clash on May 8.

“Quite frankly it is ridiculous that we are still waiting for an answer," Koch said.

"We first approached the AFL on this matter two years ago in the lead up to our 150th anniversary season.

"To think we are 10 days away from the Showdown and still waiting for a response is totally disrespectful to our fans and our club."

Port Adelaide players, pictured here wearing the historic guernsey against Adelaide in 2020.
Port Adelaide wore the historic guernsey against Adelaide in 2020. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)

Bombshell document emerges amid AFL furore

That sparked an angry response from McGuire on Footy Classified in a clash with former Port Adelaide player Kane Cornes.

Cornes showed McGuire a document that showed McGuire had agreed to allow Port to wear the black and white guernsey on an annual basis in 2007.

Cornes claimed the document was the original agreement signed by Port and Collingwood officials when the Power first requested to wear the alternate strip.

Cornes said the document, signed by McGuire, showed Collingwood agreed to let Port wear the black and white strip every year for Heritage Round - a concept that no longer exists.

McGuire shot back by claiming Port had actually tried to distance themselves from their SANFL heritage and forfeited any link to the black and white colours when they entered the AFL.

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"Port Adelaide, back when you were playing, were running away from the Magpies as quickly as possible,” McGuire told Cornes.

“Port Adelaide tried to break away — I won’t say 'Rat'. I won’t say they were 'Judas' to the South Australian National Football League.

“When they came into the competition, they couldn’t get any supporters. They realised teal was going to be their colour.”

In the heated exchange, Cornes accused McGuire of backflipping on an agreement with Port.

“Why you were comfortable with Port Adelaide wearing it once a year in 2007 and now you’re strongly against it?" Cornes asked.

“This is celebrating South Australian football and it’s important to the fans.

“It is the equivalent of celebrating South Australian football. It is in South Australia. Not involving Collingwood. Collingwood fans don’t care.”

Eddie McGuire and David Koch, pictured here at the MCG in 2014.
Eddie McGuire and David Koch in 2014. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)

New Collingwood president refused to back down

McGuire then suggested Collingwood and Port Adelaide should duke it out in court.

“I’m sick of it. I think it needs to go to court and be arbitrated on,” he said.

“Beyond the AFL. Get it stamped one way or the other. It is quite dangerous what they’re doing.

“I’ve said yes every time when Port Adelaide have asked to wear the jumper when there was a half-decent reason, but to play it twice (per year), you’ve got to be kidding.

“Fair dinkum. It is ridiculous.”

New Collingwood president Mark Korda released a statement on Wednesday night refusing to bow to Port Adelaide.

“There is a place for only one black and white striped jumper in the AFL, the iconic Collingwood jumper,” he said.

“We are surprised and disappointed that there is a renewed attempt to introduce the jumper to the competition on a permanent basis.

“Particularly given what we believe to be an agreement that was reached between the two clubs a number of years ago.”

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