Other measures agreed to by officials from both clubs, the AFL, the players union and Goodes’ management on Wednesday include a live welcome to country ceremony as opposed to the normal broadcast on the scoreboard and the display of big screen messages and LED signage centred around respect, unity and fairness.
After a week of arguments and turmoil – with many commentators denying the racist connotations of the booing – it was a moving display of respect for Indigenous Australians, and for Adam Goodes.
On Saturday a season-high crowd of nearly 40,000 people at the Sydney Cricket Ground raised their voices in unison to cheer the absent Goodes in an emotionally charged game between the Swans and the Adelaide Crows. “A lot of it I haven’t read, but obviously been involved in before”, Goodes said, referring to nationwide discussions about the booing.
“I’ve learnt in a pretty short period of time with Lance, if he says he’s right and he’ll perform”, Longmire said.
“This is an interesting way to start to training”, Adam Goodes said as he walked from the change rooms up the Paul Kelly Race and onto the SCG, captured down the barrels of 50 or more cameras.
Planning for Saturday night began even before it was announced that Goodes would not play last weekend.
But Fitzpatrick and McLachlan were insistent Goodes had the unanimous support from AFL powerbrokers.
“What we are confident about is the Geelong Football Club and what they’re about and what they stand for”, the coach said.
Longmire said he expected Goodes, widely seen as one of the game’s best-ever players, to be available for Saturday’s away clash with Geelong Cats, although his place in the side will not be confirmed until later in the week.
“I don’t think he had intentions to watch the game but he ended up watching the final three quarters and couldn’t believe the amount of support that he had”, Longmire said.
“That’s my job, it’s what I love doing”.
“Am I optimistic that we’ve moved forward?”
Shepparton rapper Briggs has weighed in on the saga surrounding Sydney AFL star Adam Goodes.
“But we should explore all these options thoroughly and have the discussion before we throw them out”.
“When you’re at the top of your game you will either be lauded or applauded no matter your performance, behaviour and conduct “on” or “off” the field, ” he said.
That comes after a media report claimed commission members’ views on the Goodes issue last week were divided.
“Certainly from our perspective, to plan something like that, and potentially arrive at an outcome that’s contrived, is not the way we’re choosing to go”.