The situation between Adam Treloar and Collingwood is set to be a messy and ugly encounter for both parties, with the unfair treatment of Treloar by the Magpies posing more than just a one-time disaster for the club.
According to The Age, the club believes that Treloar should go. They believe he can not be an elite footballer with his partner Kim Ravaillion set to move to Queensland to play netball – alongside their infant daughter.
While Treloar has stated he wants to stay with the club and it would not affect his play, the club disagrees.
However, while Treloar can stay with the club and force them to honour his contract, it is extremely unlikely given the lack of support from the Magpies to keep him.
The most likely scenario seems to be that Treloar will eventually request a trade to play for the Gold Coast Suns, so that he can be with his family and Collingwood are able to get rid of him.
The Magpies would be interested in the Suns’ pick five if any trade occurred, with Gold Coast currently not publicly stating interest in Treloar.
The news of the Pies not wanting Treloar due to this reason stings considering the 27-year-old star has been open about struggling with anxiety. The player stated in an interview with Fox Footy last August that, “if it wasn’t for my partner Kimmy, for Nick Maxwell, Bucks, Jacqui [Louder] who is my psych/really, really good friend and my family, I probably wouldn’t be playing footy, to be honest with you.”
AFL legend Kane Cornes has criticised the Magpies on AFL Trade Radio for not supporting Treloar, stating that: “I just wonder why Collingwood are prepared to sweep other issues confronting certain players under the carpet at their club, but they’re not willing to support one of its marquee players through this.”
“There has to be a better solution than booting him out the door with five years to run on a contract that he only signed last August.”
Cornes also added that Collingwood supported Treloar when he came out about his anxiety, however they seem to be using it against him adding: “I bet it’s making other teammates of Treloar at Collingwood wonder how the club would support them if a similar family issue arose for them.”
With Treloar being such a loved and pivotal member of the club, this scenario will lead many of his Collingwood teammates to question their loyalties to the club and whether the Magpies would offer the same lack of sympathy for other players experiencing personal issues.
The whole situation is certainly messy and presents Collingwood in a very negative light, painting a picture of a club that sees the players as investments rather than people.
While athletes are investments in a club’s future, teams cannot afford to look past the individuals as people, with the best clubs having a welcoming culture and a massive support team behind their players in order to make sure they are prepared both physically and mentally.
Cornes added that: “good clubs, they go over the top to support their players and make sure that it doesn’t have an impact on the field,” with the Port Adelaide legend believing that the club simply will not even give the star a chance to prove he is capable of dealing with his family situation.
There is also the fact that Treloar recently signed an extension last year that will see him contracted until 2025. His deal next year sees him earn $900,000, a sum Collingwood have stated they are willing to contribute $200,000 of his deal next year if he is taken by another club.
This makes the situation seem as though Collingwood are struggling with the salary cap, and are trying to move Treloar based on his massive contract. While the club has insisted they would be acting the same way if the star was contracted to a smaller amount, it leaves both fans and the players on his team to question whether the club would do the same to other players who have committed long-term.
Former Magpies recruiter Matt Rendell discussed this with AFL Trade Radio’s The Late Trade, stating that: “The problem I see with Collingwood is if you’re going to sign someone on a big contract and then try and trade them out – and what we’re hearing it’s maybe (Tom) Phillips and (Mason) Cox as well – you’re going to start losing a bit of credibility when you start back-ending contracts.”
This situation with Treloar, and potentially other players signing extensions and then being traded will affect Collingwood long-term. Players running low on their deals or prospective free-agents could see signing with the club long-term as something that they should avoid based on history.
If this is the case, the Pies will struggle to keep many players long-term with the team losing credibility and being seen as a club that is not loyal to its players and a side that is not willing to honour the contracts it has put on the table.
St Kilda and Essendon legend Brendon Goddard also commented on the situation, stating that the club wanting to get rid of Treloar due to believing he will not cope with his family being interstate as being “so insensitive and wrong based on assumptions, it’s a totally wrong way to look at it. It’s looking worse and worse for Collingwood.”
“It’s not humane and it’s not the way you treat people. I’m just thinking from Adam’s point of view too, just to hear that from your footy club, you don’t trust me and again there’s that love thing. Imagine how he’s feeling now,” he added.
No matter how the Treloar-Collingwood saga plays out, the situation will end messily. As Goddard stated, the situation is looking worse and worse for Collingwood as the reports continue to come out.
The football club is being painted in a horrible light by disrespecting a player who has given so much heart and loyalty to the club, with the Magpies losing belief in one of their top players.
The whole Treloar saga will be a turnoff for some free agents, and I sense it will make other players wearing the black and white weigh up their options in the future. Image is an important factor for a club when signing players, and this saga will cripple Collingwood’s image, if it has not already done so.