Eade the AFL man most likely to coach Port
Rodney Eade appears the man most likely as AFL club Port Adelaide accelerate a search for their next coach.
Eade’s current employer, Collingwood, won’t stop him pursuing the Port job during the Magpies’ finals campaign.
And Port’s chief executive Keith Thomas says an experienced coach will form part of the Power’s next coaching “package”.
Eade, a 54-year-old former coach of Sydney and Western Bulldogs, is in his first year as Collingwood’s football and coaching strategist.
Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley says he’s reached an understanding with Eade as the finals loom.
“I have spoken to Rocket (Eade), if only to offer support and to make sure that he understands that whatever he needs to do or wants to do, we’re more than welcome for him to do,” Buckley told reporters in Melbourne on Wednesday.
“But that really becomes something that happens behind the scenes while we focus on the job at hand.”
Buckley said he “absolutely” wanted to keep Eade at Collingwood as Port prepared to up the ante in their negotiations with the long-time coach.
Port boss Thomas, one of a five-strong coach selection panel, has expressed desire to secure an experienced coach.
“I do think that you have to bring into the package, one way or another, some more experience,” Thomas told Triple M radio in Adelaide on Tuesday.
“… Particularly if you are bringing in a young coach, you would want to have some experience with them – and putting a package together like that is difficult.
“So the other alternative is you just bring a very experienced coach in and try and do it that way.
“But that field is pretty small.”
Thomas on Wednesday declined to elaborate on his comments, while Buckley sang Eade’s praises.
“He has brought great experience, his knowledge of the game as it stands in 2012 is excellent, his opposition analysis has been great,” Buckley said.
“And I think the main thing for me has been having that old head, with all due respect, to bounce things off – not just for me but for the assistant coaches, they go to him often.
“We are a coaching team and Rocket’s a part of that and a very important part.”
Matthew Primus quit on August 5 as coach of Port when told his contract would not be renewed next season.
Garry Hocking was appointed interim coach until the end of the season – the fifth consecutive year the Power have missed the finals.© AAP 2013
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