'Needs to stop': Ross Lyon hits out at AFL 'smear campaign'

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·4-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Pictured here, Ross Lyon speaks on Channel Nine's Footy Classified.
Ross Lyon has hit out at a 'smear campaign' he says is being run against him. Pic: Channel Nine

Former Fremantle coach Ross Lyon says a "smear campaign" is being used to discredit him as reports swirl that he is in line to take over the now vacated job at Carlton.

David Teague's much expected but highly drawn out sacking as Blues coach was finally confirmed on Thursday, leaving AFL fans and commentators furious.

SHOCK: Brian Taylor airlifted to hospital after freak explosion

BRUTAL: Fears over Collingwood captain's 'soul destroying' decision

Former St Kilda and Fremantle coach Ross Lyon is among the leading contenders to replace him, particularly after former Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson effectively pulled out of the race when he announced he was taking a break from AFL in 2022.

Lyon's prospects have been overshadowed after reports of a sexual harassment complaint against him from 2018 resurfaced.

A former Fremantle staffer claimed that Lyon made inappropriate comments about her attire at a club Christmas party, with the woman paid a confidential settlement after making a complaint with Workcover in 2017.

The AFL investigated the matter and deemed that no further action was required.

Recent reports have also claimed that Lyon and Adam Cerra - who says he wants to move back to Victoria and play for Carlton - had a falling out during their time together at Fremantle.

Both subjects were brought up on Channel Nine's Footy Classified on Wednesday night, where veteran AFL journalist Caroline Wilson labelled it part of a "smear campaign" against her colleague.

Ross Lyon 'disappointed' by timing of reports

Lyon says he is "disappointed" by the timing of the reports and insisted they "need to stop" here.

"I understand how things work. The reality is, I'm disappointed. I'm disappointed for a whole bunch of reasons that I don't want to go into," Lyon said.

"But what I can say is, and I said at the time when I addressed things in Fremantle, the duress and the hurt that a lot of parties were feeling, I felt terrible.

"I need to say this; there was a respectful and confidential resolution reached and designed to protect all parties.

"The reason it's respectful as well is because it is confidential. My intention is to respect that and not comment any further."

Seen here, Ross Lyon and sacked Carlton coach David Teague.
Ross Lyon's history has been dug up after he emerged as a leading contender to replace sacked Carlton coach David Teague. Pic: Getty

Lyon's comments come after he revealed that he turned down an approach about Collingwood's senior coaching job, while also saying he would consider the Carlton job if they came calling.

The 54-year-old says he expected his past to be dug up again after being linked with various roles.

"It's something that I've carried with me and that I'm aware of, and that I'm sensitive to," he added.

"I don't want to injure any party either. I'm aware as I step foot back in, that it would be raised and that I would need to talk about it like I have now.

"It's been two and a half years and I'm not in a position [to talk about it].

"By their very nature, they're confidential and respectful. I'd like to say, it needs to stop here.

He says he has no idea where reports came from that 21-year-old star Cerra would be reluctant to move to Carlton if Lyon was appointed coach, denying the pair ever had a falling out at Fremantle.

“My experience (with Cerra) was really positive, but I don’t really want to vindicate it. I think it is part of the smear campaign, to be honest,” Lyon told Footy Classified.

“You can speak to Adam, but Adam used to come over for dinner and when I got sacked, he and Andy Brayshaw brought flowers over.

“I’ve never raised my voice at Adam, he played 43 or 44 games, and it doesn’t really interest me because it’s not in my wheelhouse. It’s no concern of mine.”

with AAP

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting