Nathan Buckley responds to secret recording from Heritier Lumumba

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·Sports Editor
·5-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Nathan Buckley and Heritier Lumumba, pictured here in their time at Collingwood.
Nathan Buckley has responded to Heritier Lumumba. Image: Getty

Nathan Buckley has once again hit back at Heritier Lumumba after the former Collingwood player released a secret recording of a meeting between the pair during their time at the Magpies.

Lumumba, who left Collingwood in 2014, has been speaking out about his experiences of racism and abuse at the Magpies for a number of years.

'MORE GOING ON': Shock new claims in West Coast scandal

'ABSOLUTELY PATHETIC': AFL world left seething over 'dog act'

On Monday he made explosive new claims about alleged misconduct at Collingwood during Buckley's stint as head coach, including allegations an assistant coach using a pornographic image during a team meeting.

Things took another turn on Tuesday when Lumumba posted an audio clip on Twitter of a conversation he had with Buckley in 2014 in which the former coach apparently accused Lumumba of throwing Eddie McGuire "under the bus" after the ex-Collingwood president's infamous 'King Kong' comment about Adam Goodes.

In the recording, Buckley can be heard saying to Lumumba: “You threw him under the bus. You threw him under the bus, mate.”

Lumumba replied: “I didn’t throw him under the bus, and we can’t go through that again.

“This is part of my issue, because you still believe that, and that’s what hurts me so much Bucks, and I know you’ve carried it this whole time.”

Buckley then says: “What the whole thing comes back to is, do you actually think about the best interests of the football club?

“You’ve become a bit of a rogue and you might call it leadership but you’ve basically gone on your own, not tangents, but on your own crusades at times.”

Lumumba also tweeted: “I’ve given Nathan Buckley many years to grow and hopefully tell the truth.

"Unfortunately, he has used his platform and considerable profile to discredit me, including making insinuations about my mental health and being deliberately misleading about the past.”

Nathan Buckley and Heritier Lumumba, pictured here at a Collingwood Magpies training session in 2014.
Nathan Buckley (centre) and Heritier Lumumba (R) at a Collingwood Magpies training session in 2014. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)

Buckley has since responded, writing on Twitter: “Heritier, I offer you the opportunity to put a full and uncut version of our conversations on public record so as to provide context to our conversations and the support that was provided to you above and beyond that which could be reasonably expected in the circumstances.”

The former coach also hit back at claims from Lumumba that he was forced out of the club because he spoke out against racism.

“And facts??? You asked to be removed from the leadership group and…. You asked to be traded from the club. The club simply facilitated your requests," Buckley wrote.

Gerard Whateley also reported on Tuesday night that Buckley "wasn't aware" he was being recorded.

“I asked Nathan Buckley tonight were you aware you were being recorded and he answered, quote, ‘I wasn’t aware, no’,” Whateley said on Fox Footy.

Heritier Lumumba's new claims about time at Collingwood

On Monday, Lumumba alleged in a News Corp report that an unidentified assistant coach used a pornographic image during a team meeting in 2014 when Buckley was in charge.

“An assistant coach showed a pornographic image during a team meeting to emphasise a point that he was making,” Lumumba said.

“One of the team rules was to ‘come forward’, so he showed an image of a group of about five or more men ejaculating on a woman’s face with the words ‘come forward’ as a caption.

“Nathan Buckley was the head coach and seemed unfazed by it all.”

Buckley later responded on SEN radio, saying: "The club have, from my understanding tried to work with Heritier and other Indigenous players, who have been part of systemic racism situations over the course of the club's history.

Nathan Buckley, pictured here commentating for Fox Footy after leaving Collingwood in 2021.
Nathan Buckley is now commentating for Fox Footy after leaving Collingwood in 2021. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

"I am happy to engage with the club however they wish, but Heritier hasn't been satisfied with that and that's why we are where we're at.

"There are other versions of the truth that are a long way away from the way he perceives it.

"It seems that Heritier doesn't really want to move forward unless, I don't know, he needs heads to roll.

"I don't know exactly what he's looking for, or what his requirements are to feel like he has been heard, because that is really what we have tried to do.

"He has been apologised to - I've apologised to him, the club has apologised to him ... for the environment that he's been in - and not just Heritier - but the other Indigenous players.

"Other areas when we talk about misogyny, homophobia, those cultural aspects of an organisation - football clubs have come a long way.

"We're talking about things that have happened 10-to-15 years ago, and when you remove context and bring it into the current day, it sounds even more abhorrent than it would have been then."

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