Eddie McGuire steps down as Collingwood president immediately

Eddie McGuire (pictured) talking during a press conference.
Eddie McGuire (pictured) has stood down from his role as Collingwood president effective immediately. (Getty Images)

Embattled Collingwood president Eddie McGuire has stood down from his role effective immediately.

McGuire came under heavy scrutiny in the media after his response to findings of "systemic racism" at the club.

McGuire, who was set to walk away as the club's leader at year's end, fronted the media last week to speak about the findings and copped widespread backlash after describing it as a "proud day" for the club.

He later backtracked on his comments, admitting he "was wrong" at a Collingwood annual general meeting on Tuesday night.

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But on Tuesday afternoon, McGuire announced he will end his role as president of the club after 23 years immediately.

“I try my best, and I don’t always get it right,” McGuire said during the press conference.

McGuire later broke down after claiming: “I love my memories of Victoria Park. For the first time in my life I felt part of a community.”

McGuire added: “With the indulgence of my media partners, I am going to take a break to regroup and heal.”

“I am with you all, side by side, black and white forever,” McGuire said at the end.

Fallout from McGuire’s press conference

Last week, many disgusted observers noted that McGuire never once used the term 'sorry' throughout the entirety of the press conference, which last more than one hour.

On Thursday in an open letter on behalf of "150 footballers and netballers" at the club, Collingwood went some way to rectifying the situation.

"Sorry. As athletes we are sorry to anyone who, through their association with our club, has been marginalised, hurt or discriminated against due to their race," the letter read.

"Through our silence we feel responsible for these injustices. We acknowledge it is not enough to simply show support for the principles of anti-racism and inclusion. We will confront the history of our club in order to learn, heal and determine how best to walk forward together.

"Over the last 72 hours we have had the opportunity to digest the DO BETTER report. We also apologise to those members, fans and community who feel guilt and shame as a result of the systemic racism that has occurred within our organisation.

"To all the young people who dream about one day pulling on the black and white stripes, we pledge as athletes to continue to help create a club that allows ALL of us to thrive, regardless of race.

"Faithfully. This letter is endorsed and supported fully by the 120 staff of Collingwood."

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