James Hird: Releases the lid right off!


How interesting to listen to Crawf talk about how he wanted to work with Hird in the media when they have both retired. Lots of respect between these two blokes.


And then they bring out an efigy of Vlad, and Fitzpatrick and burn it to the ground as part of the celebration.


They work well together too.


James is doing well thanks


I love it BJ, we’re funding the movie.


They say opposites attract


I would be devastated if Hird coached another club. I want him back at Essendon…


Kevin Sheedy says it’s time to give James Hird a second chance as an AFL coach

Coaching legend Kevin Sheedy says James Hird should be welcomed back into the AFL’s coaching ranks.

Sheedy said Hird deserved a chance to reignite his coaching career almost four years after he resigned from Essendon over the club’s crippling supplements saga.

Hird has recently told friends he would consider returning to the game if the right opportunity surfaced, despite knocking back a position at Fremantle last year.

Sheedy said the champion midfielder should not be punished for the drugs crisis any longer.

“I would stake everything I had that James Hird will be a great coach, if he is ever given the chance,” Sheedy told the Herald Sun.

“Please don’t underestimate the young man who has a fierce amount of pride and would have been hurt (by the scandal) like anyone else would have been hurt.

“And I hate to say it again, but there has never been a positive drugs test.

“I’m not blaming anyone, but there is no way known he would have wished for what happened.

“And he has said sorry. How many times do you have to say sorry?

“I know people will jump at shadows because of what happened and that’s unfortunate.

“But he is one of the most intelligent football thinkers I’ve met. I think he is prime, ready to coach at an AFL club (again).”

Sheedy and Hird won two premierships together at Essendon as coach and player.

Sheedy met with Hird for lunch last week and said the 46-year-old was in “a great place” after overcoming a mental health issue, stemming from the supplements scandal fallout.

Hird spent five weeks in a mental health facility in 2017 after reaching “breaking point” and said it was “life-changing”. “We discuss football,” Sheedy said.

“I’ve got no doubt if he had his head wrapped around a good club, and a good club which needed help, I would back him in. “He is not a person who will lose twice.

“Yes he got his fingers burnt by not doing an (assistant coaching) apprenticeship, but he has ended up doing the toughest apprenticeship I’ve ever known of any former champion.

“Now, I think if a (Stephen) Dank walked into the club now, he would know what to do.”

Essendon was booted out of the 2013 finals and 34 players were banned for one year for breaching the anti-doping code, relating to the 2012 supplements program.

Hird has pursued business interests in recent years and presented the 2017 Norm Smith Medal. His three sons are involved in Essendon’s James Hird father-son academy.

Sheedy, a four-time premiership coaching icon, said football should embrace Hird like the cricket world was preparing to welcome back former captain Steve Smith and David Warner who were banned for their role in the ball tampering saga in South Africa last year.

“I actually think they (cricketers) were worse than Hird,” Sheedy said. “Every player in the AFL has supplements, it is yet to be proven ever that they were the wrong supplements because no one knows.

“We know there was actual sandpaper in their hand, don’t we? That’s correct isn’t it?

“I don’t want to be judge on those boys, because they’ve moved on, but it’s like me — I hit people (on the field) when I played, and I shouldn’t have done it, but I did, and coaching made me a better person for it.”


Two of my favourite football people Sheedy and Hird.

Not surprising I agree with Sheedy.

However I also cannot see Hird back at EFC in a senior coaching role. As such, it’s simply an “all the best” to the great man, and whatever he chooses to do is ok by me. Even if it’s Fark Carlton. That’s how much respect I have for him.


Interesting that this is being floated now. Is it just random? Is it being put out there as a sort of pub test update? It will be interesting to hear whether the most vocal critics have softened in their attitudes.


Agreed. I suspect it will have to be a non-Victorian club initially, if it were to happen, but I cannot see him ever returning to Essendon in a coaching capacity.


Why couldn’t Hirdy ever come back to Essendon is some capacity? The choice should be his, as to whether to return or not. Many supporters would love him to come and back and then there are the others who wouldn’t want him anywhere near the place.

Why? Because its not good optics for a club who let everyone down with their slack governance and some staff who were on the take looking after their own best interests or, for the AFL.

Enough time has past to put away the big sticks, surely?


I think the role is actually the sticking point here. Yes Hird could come back but what if he wants to coach. I don’t see an avenue there and I am not sure that would be his desire. I don’t think he would want to play an ambassador type role either. I maybe on the outside of this thought but I think he needs to work at a new club and gain fresh new experiences. He will never not love our club and its great to see his kids training with us…but to be honest I want the guy to be happy and be successful and whatever he does. I think for him a new look at the footy world from an external EFC point of view is healthy.


He will never coach a senior team again. Anyone who thinks he will is living in fantasy land


I’m not 100% sure where you are coming from WOB, as the comment can be interpreted many ways.

But I do know that the worm turns, and if competent individuals really do want back in, there is often a chance in the future to do that.

James is highly competent, and highly driven. It is my opinion that one day he will want back in. I don’t know if that is senior coaching or another role (as others have stated), but I firmly believe he will make a return to football in a significant capacity.


Just now on SEN, Whately said there should be no impediment to Hird coaching again. Also said that Hird had served his penalty and was effectively “back in the AFL” as he had been offered jobs ( Fremantle?) which he had not taken.

EDIT:. The only reason I mention this, is that Whately is now one of the opinion makers in the media and is approaching “doyen” status for some, FWIW. I guess this is mainly mainly because previous doyens are all dead.


So coincidental that it comes on the day after the BBL cricket finishes, just in time to take over the news cycle.

Just in case there was any hint this isn’t being stage-managed by the AFL, McGuire has come out in support of it this morning.

As much as I hate how cynical this is, if it means Hird can go back to coaching at some stage if he wants to, then I’m for it.

Hard to see Jim come back to us though, especially while Xavier is in charge.


Would be interesting if the job comes up at Carlton if he throws in for it?

When bought up on the podcast, it seems that his family is not for the idea, and he is very aware of how much poo his family has been through.


Not so sure about that. Would not be surprised to see him come in under woosh next year, as the head coach in waiting, really wouldn’t, … or maybe assist elsewhere, and then come in.

The AFL fkng owe him big time, and they know it.


AFL already putting the minions to work to pave the way in the unwasheds heads and facilitate his re entry.


I have a gut feeling Whately is now the AFL’s preferred mouthpiece. The wordwhorewitch and the Fatman rant a bit too much and have lost their luster as they are so obviously puppets who can only talk when the AFL are standing behind them with their hands firmly inserted up their backs, so the general footy follower has become suspicious of their diatribe.

Whately sounds more coherent, but is most likely passing on information from his last chat with Gil, as he is far too pathetic to have his own opinion on something as controversial as the Hird-AFL relationship.