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Kane Cornes slams 'ridiculous' move from Bulldogs to appoint Luke Beveridge 'minder'

The Port Adelaide great has slammed the decision to appoint Matthew Egan as a mentor and support for Luke Beveridge.

Kane Cornes has hit out at the Western Bulldogs' appointment of Matthew Egan as a mentor and support for senior leader Luke Beveridge, questioning why a 2016 premiership-winning coach needed "minding". Beveridge has been under pressure heading into the new season after a disappointing campaign in 2023.

Following a review into the club's football department during pre-season, it was concluded that the Bulldogs coach needed his workload eased, so the club appointed Egan as coaching performance manager. Bringing him into the Bulldogs fold was reportedly done to remove Beveridge from the spotlight and allow him to focus solely on coaching.

Kane Cornes has taken aim at the Bulldogs' decision to bring in Matt Egan as a mentor and support for Luke Beveridge, stating the 2016 premiership winning coach doesn't
Kane Cornes has taken aim at the Bulldogs' decision to bring in Matt Egan as a mentor and support for Luke Beveridge, stating the 2016 premiership winning coach doesn't "need minding". Image: Getty

Caroline Wilson told Nine's Footy Classified on Monday night that the review found that the Bulldogs as a club were as much to blame as Beveridge for a poor 2023 season. "The review is fascinating because Matthew Egan has basically come in to be the coaching director or mentor or minder of Luke Beveridge," Wilson said.

"What came out of the review as I'm told is that there was a view that you can't just blame Luke Beveridge, who was prickly and unpredictable and made some mistakes and had a few relationship issues, the club had to blame itself for not having watched over him and not having stronger people around him."

Kane Cornes says Bulldogs' biggest mistake is extending Luke Beveridge's contract

But Cornes slammed the move as "ridiculous", saying the biggest mistake the club has made was recommitting to Beveridge for an additional two years at the end of 2023. It is a decision that the Port Adelaide great says the club will pay for moving forward.

"That sounds ridiculous that an AFL senior coach, premiership-winning coach needed minding," Cornes said. "It was a mistake to re-sign him, but they've made their bed and they can lie in it. We're seeing the same issues time and time again. Yes, it's round one, but we've seen this for seven years, they concede five goals again."

Beveridge's side struggled in their round one clash on Sunday, outworked by the Demons in a 45-point defeat. Melbourne had 121 uncontested possessions, with Demon Jack Billings collecting 15 uncontested marks and Cornes says the lack of defense is what comes with Beveridge as coach.

"Luke Beveridge doesn't rate defence," Cornes said. "Coaching is about maximising the ability of your players and he hasn't been able to do that. They've got him for another two years so good luck to them."

Western Bulldogs fans furious with Ryley Sanders's substitution

A shining light from the round one match was the debut of Bulldogs No.6 draft pick Ryley Sanders, who grabbed 15 disposals and seven marks. But fans were left furious when Beveridge opted to sub Sanders out of the game in the second half after making two errors.

Caleb Daniel came on for Sanders in the third quarter and Bulldogs fans were not at all impressed considering the youngster's strong overall performance. "Why on earth has he subbed Sanders?: one person wrote on social media. "Luke Beveridge has lost the plot (don’t come with the ‘rest the first gamer’)." While another said: "Bevo is the one who should be subbed. An absolute joke."

The Bulldogs coach said the decision wasn't injury-related after the match. "He's fine. At that point in time he was one of a handful that could have come off for experience and stability in the team," Beveridge said.

"Ryley's going really well. He’s going to be a tremendous player for the club and he’s still learning. But he was the one."

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