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Nathan Buckley Ben Amarfio walk, next North Melbourne coach, interview, Best On Ground, David Noble sacked

Former Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley has confirmed he told North Melbourne chief executive Ben Amafio he would “never consider” returning to coaching in 2023.

Buckley and Amafio were photographed walking this week – the same week the Kangaroos parted ways with David Noble after 38 games.

Speaking on Fox Footy’s Best On Ground, Buckley said he had been in contact with Amarfio several times over the year.

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“He’s been calling and going, he’s been struggling a bit so I’ve been checking in with him to see how he’s going. We’re great teammates,” Buckley said.

“He asked me if I wanted to coach next year, I said no, I have no interest in coaching.

“This was a very short segment of our conversation on the walk and then we both got down to business about how we were both going about our lives.”

Buckley has criticized Amafio and those targeting the club for parting ways with Noble after 38 games, despite earlier calls for him to be sent off.

“It’s hard for him. “All this talk you have to let go, you have to let go of this coach, he’s fallen here, then make a call and the club will start criticizing him saying it’s weak to let a bloke go because he’s only coached 38 games,” he said.

“Make up your mind. I think we as the media should have some responsibility and accountability in how we see this.”

“You can’t just push for a decision, then the decision happens and then the criticism. I think it’s tough to be in that position, but it’s something you take when you’re in a top position… When you’re not losing, it’s tough.

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