GWS Giants coach Leon Cameron has been “frozen out” by the club’s power brokers in a move that suggests his tenure is coming to an end, according to Caroline Wilson.
The Giants 1-5 start to the 2022 season has put the pressure squarely on Cameron, who is in his ninth season at the club and in the final year of his current contract.
While the season is still young, Wilson called the Cameron’s position at the club “untenable”, saying his relationship with Giants CEO, Dave Matthews, and GM of football, Jason McCartney, had broken down.
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“You’ve got a CEO in Dave Matthews who I think has lost faith in Leon Cameron,” Wilson told Nine’s Footy Classified.
“It was put to me by somebody very close to the club that Leon is being frozen out. I don’t think the relationship between Leon Cameron and Jason McCartney, the footy boss, is what it could be.
“It’s been put to me by other senior coaches that when the CEO stops being your mate and talking to you, you know the writing is on the wall, and that’s where it’s at.
“The atmosphere at that club is not what it should be, not what it has been. There’s conversations, but the relationship is not in any way what it was. I’m told it is more of a freezing out situation.”
Former Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson is one of the hot tips to replace Cameron at the Giants, but Wilson said the Giants would not be the only contender for his signature.
“Do they want Alastair Clarkson? If they do, something has to happen quickly,” she said.
“I began this season absolutely convinced that by the end of the season Alastair Clarkson would be coaching the Gold Coast.
“Despite what people at the Gold Coast have been saying, I believe that is the AFL’s preference, and I think that is something Alastair Clarkson has definitely entertained.”
Despite the Giants’ poor start to the season, the club was criticized for freezing out its coach by former St Kilda and Fremantle mentor, Ross Lyon, who warned of the mental health implications of such treatment.
“I’m concerned for the mental health, it’s a lonely job anyway at the top,” he told Footy Classified.
“It’s an indictment (on the club). The leaders need to get to him and support him. It’s hard enough being an AFL coach, let alone thinking your CEO and your footy operations manager (are against you). I’d be devastated if I was the coach.
“What I would like to see happen if that’s the case, and I think Leon is mature enough, behind the doors (you say), ‘Clarkson’s available. You’ve been here 10 years and been incredible, but we are going after him , but we want to give you the respect and courtesy’. I think he would appreciate that.”
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