'Too late': AFL world reacts to shock Eddie McGuire announcement

Riley Morgan
·Sports Reporter
·5-min read
Eddie McGuire (pictured) fronts the media to announce he will step down as president of Collingwood.
Eddie McGuire (pictured) has been savaged on social media after stepping down from his role as Collingwood president effective immediately. (Getty Images)

The AFL world and broader community have reacted to Eddie McGuire’s shock announcement he has stood down from his role as Collingwood president effective immediately.

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

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“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.”

But the end of his tenure comes off the back of his latest controversy.

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 of "systemic racism" at the club.

McGuire 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.

Many called for his immediate resignation after the press conference.

But after his announcement on Tuesday evening, many were quick to call for ‘change’ with McGuire gone.

Plenty still felt McGuire’s resignation was years too late after a number of controversies.

Many wished McGuire the best after more than 23 years at the helm of Collingwood.

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.

Eddie McGuire resigns effective immediately as Collingwood Football Club President whilst speaking to the media during a Collingwood Magpies AFL press conference at the Holden Centre on February 09, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia.
Eddie McGuire resigns effective immediately as Collingwood Football Club President whilst speaking to the media during a Collingwood Magpies AFL press conference at the Holden Centre on February 09, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mackenzie Sweetnam/Getty Images)

"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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