David Koch hits back at Eddie McGuire over 'annoying' AFL feud

Chris Young
·Sports Reporter
Port Adelaide chairman David Koch has responded to Eddie McGuire's tirade over the Power's historic 'prison bars' jumper. Pictures: Sunrise/Getty Images
Port Adelaide chairman David Koch has responded to Eddie McGuire's tirade over the Power's historic 'prison bars' jumper. Pictures: Sunrise/Getty Images

Port Adelaide chairman David Koch has hit back at Eddie McGuire, after the former Collingwood president said the Power's requests to wear an iconic jumper design were becoming 'annoying'.

The Power have asked the AFL for permission to wear the club's iconic 'prison bar' jumper design in its showdown match against the Adelaide Crows.

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Collingwood have long opposed Port Adelaide's use of the design due to the similarities to its own black and white design, and despite losing the club presidency earlier this year, Eddie McGuire was still vehemently opposed to its use.

Asked about the latest request by Footy Classified co-host Caroline Wilson on Wednesday night, McGuire said there was absolutely no way Collingwood would approve the plan, going so far as to label the repeated requests 'annoying'.

Koch has since hit back at McGuire, who he has sparred with over the issue before, arguing the decision rested with the AFL and that it was important to acknowledge each team's heritage.

“As we’ve said all along, it is a decision for the AFL and we’ll continue to go through the official channels to have that conversation,” Koch told The Advertiser.

“The AFL’s purpose is to ‘progress the game so everyone can share in its heritage’ – everyone.

“Heritage makes our game stronger, connecting our fans and stakeholders uniquely to their clubs – all clubs.

“Anything we can do to strengthen this bond can only build stronger clubs and a healthier game.

“We are simply asking to celebrate our heritage by wearing this Guernsey in two Showdowns a year at Adelaide Oval.”

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McGuire said on Footy Classified that the Magpies deserved the final say on the design's usage because of their more substantial financial contributions to the league, adding that the Power have 'got a thousand jumpers they can wear'.

"Stop annoying us every year. Simple as that. Back off, no. You’ve got a great jumper, just get on with it. It’s just annoying now," McGuire said.

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McGuire's vehement response to what many have interpreted as a reasonable request from Port Adelaide raised they eyebrows of footy fans on social media.

On SEN Radio though, former Port Adelaide star Kane Cornes was much more blunt, saying it was 'absolutely pathetic' that the AFL hadn't resolved the issue.

“The AFL could have solved this issue 15 years ago and said this is it, this is the rules and this is what’s happening – and they can still do that,” Cornes said on Thursday.

Port Adelaide wore the 'prison bar' jumpers during the Showdown match against the Adelaide Crows last season. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)
Port Adelaide wore the 'prison bar' jumpers during the Showdown match against the Adelaide Crows last season. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)

“It’s like when they allowed Collingwood to get away with not having a clash jumper. The AFL were weak on that issue. They were weak with Richmond, now finally Richmond has a clash jersey, which they won a premiership in.

“Has that hurt anyone? Has that hurt Richmond by having a clash guernsey? Will it hurt Collingwood to let Port Adelaide wear a clash jumper in two showdowns? No it won’t.

“It won’t affect the Collingwood Football Club one bit.”

Fans took to social media as well, many quizzing why the Magpies were so opposed to the move.

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McGuire continued to double down on the Magpies' likely refusal of the Port Adelaide request, claiming the club was 'sick of' having these arguments.

In a fiery tirade, McGuire suggested Port Adelaide should 'worry about making money and stop annoying us'.

“It is a trademark issue. The AFL, when they took over all our trademarks, they must protect the trademark," McGuire said.

“Everyone is sick of it. They’ve got great jumpers. They’ve got a thousand jumpers they’ve worn over the years. It’s not a small thing. If it’s such a small thing, why are they driving us mad every year?"

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