Collingwood legend Nathan Buckley has ruled himself out of the Essendon coaching race after an acrimonious parting of ways with Ben Rutton as the Bombers begin their search for their third senior boss in four seasons.
Essendon confirmed on Sunday that Rutten’s sacking would end a terrible week for the club. It marked the end of a horror week for the club, including board turmoil after David Barham took over as chairman and an 11th-hour search for Alastair Clarkson opted to join North Melbourne.
The Bombers’ season ended with a 66-point defeat at Richmond on Saturday night.Essendon are 15th in the table, having dropped out of last year’s finals with seven wins.
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Barham revealed on Sunday that the club were targeting a “more experienced” manager to take over, but Buckley was not among those candidates.
Asked by Demons great Gary Lyon on Fox Footy whether he would take their phone calls, Buckley said: “No.
But I’ll talk to them about what I think they need, and I hope they don’t think that just changing the head coaching role is going to make a difference, because that’s not the way to go.
“I give them this advice: changing the role of coach is not about going from where you were to where you want to be.
Asked again by Lyons if they could sway him in this phone call, Buckley replied, “No.”
Buckley added that he thought the controversy over the Bombers would hurt the sale of future coaches.
“Overall, if you’re a future top coach, you’re taking advantage of every opportunity that’s available to you. “There’s a lot of things that say, ‘If you give me the chance, I’ll do it,'” Buckley said.
But I guess Essendon need to sell themselves to someone now because they need to make sure they’ve got their ducks in a row for whoever goes there – and I don’t think they have. moment”
Buckley parted ways with Collingwood midway through last season after 10 years as senior coach, during which he led the club to five finals appearances.
The Brownlow Medalist revealed earlier this year that he would not be coaching any AFL club until 2023, saying he “doesn’t feel it’s necessary to bring that stress into my life at this point”.