Revered soccer journalist Caroline Wilson made the bold appeal that Longtime and highly successful Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson will take over as Carlton’s coach at the end of 2022.
Wilson’s prediction is based on his belief that Carlton coach David Teague is “under as much pressure as any coach”, the Blues council considers Clarkson his “salvation” and Clarkson is “on a collision course” with Hawthorn.
Clarkson and Teague’s contracts are also set to expire at the end of 2022, indicating that a seamless transition is possible.
The idea of Clarkson leaving Hawthorn, the club he has coached at since September 2004 and led to four prime minister positions, is bizarre.
But Wilson suggested exactly that on Nine’s Footy Ranked tonight.
“I think David Teague is under as much pressure as any coach this year … I think what you have is your captain coming out of his contract, the team champion (Patrick Cripps) , a longtime player. injured again at (Charlie) Curnow and I think there was a bit of disenchantment on the part of some players about the re-signing of Eddie Betts, who is considered very close to the coach, ”Wilson said.
“Disappointing last year and, dare I say it, Alastair is waiting backstage and clearly at odds with the folks at his own club … I think you have one piece of advice – the Carlton advice – looking for credibility and I think they see Alastair Clarkson as their salvation.
“If things don’t work out with David Teague – and I’m moving fast, I know. But for now, if I had to pick a club that Alastair Clarkson could go to if he left Hawthorn, Carlton would be number one.”
Teague has had a positive impact on Carlton since the start of his reign as interim coach in 2019, leading the hapless Blues to six wins in their last 11 games of the season.
But while that promising turnaround landed him a three-year contract starting in 2020, it led Carlton to just seven wins in 17 games in 2020 and his side finished only 11th on the scale.
Hawthorn is struggling too – the great David King of North Melbourne has prompted them to finish in the bottom four again this season – and the quadruple Prime Minister Hawk Jordan Lewis last year has cast doubt on the will of Clarkson to rebuild the club again.
“I think there are people on the board (Carlton) who are already thinking about the manager’s departure – and it might not be this year,” Wilson said.
“I think Alastair Clarkson is the next coach for Carlton Football Club at the moment.
“It was a really tough offseason and it was a really tough season for Hawthorn last year.
“We know that Alastair Clarkson is often on a collision course with (President) Jeff Kennett, I think (former football chief) Graham Wright who is now gone and Justin Reeves the CEO have become a real connection to the hub last year, we obviously saw the stories of (Jonathon) Patton and (Tom) Scully hurting the club.
Why fans should expect new and improved Cripps – Carlton’s 2021 season preview
“I think Alastair now disagrees with a lot of his administration. He was initially frozen in choosing the new football boss. Ultimately he was part of the decision-making process. I think he was. that initially he didn’t. Looks like it fits with the re-signing of Shaun Burgoyne, which he had been pushing for.
“I think he has more of a say in AFL headquarters at the moment than in Hawthorn.”
This Wilson comment referred to Clarkson’s ability to persuade the AFL to adopt new rules and interpretations. Last year, the 368-game coaching legend made his take on congestion clear, which sparked multiple rule changes for the 2021 season, and he even had coffee with the GM. AFL Gillon McLachlan in 2018 to express concern about the Sydney Swans’ tactics in 2018 defense.
Wilson sees the 2021 season as a crucial campaign for Clarkson.
“I think it’s probably about time he moved to another club if things don’t work out at Hawthorn again this year,” Wilson said.
“And you can’t say things are looking so positive right now.”
Why 2021 could be Clarkson’s last year at Hawthorn – 2021 Hawthorn season preview
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