David Teague has challenged the Carlton board to show the courage required to back him in as senior coach as it meets on Thursday to consider an independent review that will decide Teague’s future.
He said several senior coaches had reached out to him in recent weeks as speculation about his future reached fever pitch.
Carlton coach David Teague says he is the man to lead the Blues going forward.Credit:Getty Images
Triple-premiership coach Damien Hardwick told Teague stay strong and hope that the Blues back him as the Tigers supported Hardwick at the end of 2016.
“I am really hopeful that our club back me in and have the courage to stick to the course and to finish what we started,” Teague said.
Teague’s future will be decided by a board that contains incoming president Luke Sayers, who was on the board during Mick Malthouse and Brendon Bolton’s time as coach, Mark LoGiudice, who removed Malthouse and Bolton, David Campbell, who was involved in selecting Bolton as coach, and Jeanne Pratt, who has been on the board since 2011.
Teague, who is contracted until the end of 2022, said he was comfortable with the relationships he has with the players, although he conceded he has needed to have challenging conversations with them at times.
The 40-year-old said that when he took over as coach the Blues had won four of their previous 43 matches. They have won 21 of the 48 games he has coached. He conceded consistency of performance was a problem, but the group was on a learning curve that was trending upwards.
“I have said all along I am comfortable with where it is going. It is challenging now. To perform at your best you need a psychologically safe environment and right now that is a challenge for us with everything going on,” Teague said.
He said the team needed to improve its defensive system and stoppage work, but cohesion was growing, with injuries not helping the cause on that front in 2021.
He said he did not know when the board would tell him the review’s outcome but he was planning to continue coaching.
“I’m planning to coach out the season and that is what I will do and I will do that to the best of my ability and with the support of the guys around me. I am really confident I am the guy to take the club forward and I believe in myself and I believe in the players,” Teague said.
Brodie Kemp will make his debut in Marc Murphy’s 300th game. Teague admitted it has been an emotional week for the club, with Eddie Betts’ raw interview on Fox Footy about the effects of racism bringing the coach to tears and Sam Docherty’s revelation he has to undergo chemotherapy to treat a recurrence of testicular cancer.
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