Loyalty in sport – is there such a thing? Let me modify and put my own touch on Michael Douglas’ quote in Wall Street, “If you need loyalty, get a dog”.
There’s been an abundance of talk this year about young Melbourne midfielder Tom Scully going to Greater Western Sydney (GWS) – every journalist or television reporter asks the question to whatever Demons player or coaching staff member that they interview, and today leading AFL commentator Mike Sheehan writes that Scully is off heading north.
It will be hard for Melbourne to match the offer that will, if it hasn’t already been done, be put on the table. Sport is now big business and loyalty is constantly thrown around when contract talks arise.
Here is a young player who can set his life up early on in his career but in doing so he has also attracted negative comments. Gary Ablett Jnr also came under the same scrutiny when in his final year at Skilled Stadium; talk about a move to the Gold Coast generated so much debate – actually, an incredible amount of debate.
It is interesting that there isn’t much said when players are delisted from a club’s list – loyalty is a two way street.
Put yourself in the same boat. You’re working in a business (and let me say again that sport is business, big business) and someone comes along and says to you, ‘I can pay double what you are currently earning…I want you to come work for me’. What would you do? Some may say that my view is wrong because I am discussing sport, but if you enjoy your job, enjoy who you work for and are happy, and then you go and accept another job due to a higher remuneration figure, explain how that is different?
I know that many will criticize this article for what I have noted down, but I believe that sports fans need to check their emotions and think about it, even just a little. Loyalty still remains in sport; I have written about AFL here so I will stick with the topic – Brent Harvey (Kangaroos), Brad Johnson (Bulldogs), and Dustin Fletcher (Bombers) – all players who have been at the one club for their entire career. However, the environment is changing and we all need to understand that, but with journalists gunning daily for that exclusive story, I am sure the loyalty topic will be around for some time longer.