Watson suggests Hird can wait for next year

WITH just a fortnight until James Hird returns to Australia, Essendon great Tim Watson has declared the suspended coach should not be involved at the club until the Bombers’ 2014 campaign is over.
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In an intriguing comment, Watson, the father of Bombers skipper Jobe, has also suggested that rival clubs with a coach under contract should even consider poaching stand-in coach Mark Thompson, should the Bombers not want him or he decides to move on, once the season is done.

Tim Watson, the father of Bombers skipper Jobe, has also suggested that rival clubs with a coach under contract should even consider poaching stand-in coach Mark Thompson, should the Bombers not want him or he decides to move on, once the season is done. Picture: Getty Images.

Hird is due back in Melbourne on July 28 from a study tour in France, and could appear in the Federal Court as the case he and the Bombers have brought against the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority gets under way. That trial begins on August 11.

Hird’s 12-month AFL- imposed suspension for governance failures as part of the club’s controversial supplements program expires on August 25, meaning he could return to the coach’s box alongside Thompson in some capacity for the round 23 clash against Carlton, and remain should the revitalised Bombers make the finals.

Disregarding the emotion around the Hird saga, Watson said Thompson, a dual premiership coach at Geelong, was the better coach when compared with Hird, with three years’ service and one finals campaign to his credit.

“If you were taking all of that out of it, then you are talking about a guy who has coached for only a couple of years against a guy who has already been a premiership coach. You would have to say on that evidence alone, that `Bomber’ Thompson would be better equipped to coach,” Watson said.

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