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Giants CEO says reaction to AFL stance on fan behaviour is ‘overblown’, responds to Coniglio speculation

Hour of Power

GWS Giants CEO Dave Matthews has defended the AFL’s response to growing fan discontent.

The league’s battle with fan behaviour has been one of the running themes of the season.

But Matthews told Macquarie Sports Radio the heat the league’s been under has been “overblown”, choosing to stand by AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan’s reaction to the story.

“The fan behaviour circumstances, in my view got a little bit overblown in what responsibility the AFL was required to take for it,” he said.

“Gillon McLachlan’s intent to make sure first and foremost it’s a safe environment for families to go to is something that everyone would chair as an objective and beyond that, it’s about the sort of mechanisms to try and achieve that.

“I think they’ve put their hand up and indicated there’s some spots where they can correct or improve the way they’re doing things.

“Overall, if you look at the crowds the AFL are getting through the gates right across Australia, it’s a very friendly environment.”

Matthews provided an update on Stephen Coniglio’s future at the club, saying he understood why the star midfielder was weighing up his options before signing a long-term deal.

“He’s a quality young man and he started the club, he’s been here since day one,” he told Macquarie Sports Radio.

“We have no particular issue at all that he’s taking some time over what’s a really significant decision for him.

“It may be that he makes a decision that means he’s a one-club player, if you’re forecasting the next five or six years, you’re entitled to take your time.

“He’s a great young player, a great young person and we’ve love for him to see him stay.”

Click PLAY to hear the full interview on Macquarie Sports Radio

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