Someone has to call the AFL's bluff eventually, else the current second rate arrangement (ie the state being milked by clubs such as yours) will continue ad infinitum.If the Tasmanian Government doesn't sign a new contract for Hawthorn and North Melbourne, how is that not on the premier? It's his choice.
Look, I genuinely want a Tasmanian side, preferably within five years - and a new team, not a merger or relocated side. And I want North Melbourne to play all its home games in Melbourne, forever. I've argued a lot on this site that playing home games elsewhere hurts the fabric of the club. We didn't get the traditional boost in memberships after our late 90s success in part because he were constantly being talked about as moving or merging. And we feel more than most the pain of a potential relocation of a club.
8his "give us a timeline by the end of the week" schtick would piss me off if I were the AFL. Sure it plays well to the locals, but you don't need to impress them, you need the AFL.
There is a sense of entitlement among supporters of a Tasmanian side that you need to get out of your system. Whether you like it or not, Tasmania gets a side when it is proven that it benefits the AFL. Gold Coast and GWS can point to higher TV revenue, plus significant increases in participation in those markets. The numbers in the taskforce documents (which I have read part of - not the full 200+ pages, admittedly) don't blow me away. And particularly post-COVID, and with the change in the way that people consume media in the last five years, some of the numbers are positively heroic.
I won't shed a tear if we finish up in Hobart at the end of this year, but if you think footy is struggling in Tassie now, take AFL footy off the table for five years and see how it goes then.
As for the bolded, if you want to accuse me of having a sense of entitlement all good - in return, all you are one of many who has been brainwashed into thinking that all that matters is money, ratings, "expansion", etc.
You are ignorant of the fact that the AFL's responsibility isn't just to grow the game - it's also to ensure the health of the game in existing areas. It's the custodian of the game, that's the mantle it took on (but has pretty much abandoned, clearly).
Tasmania is an existing heartland area - it doesn't have to generate increased TV ratings, make more money, etc to justify an AFL side. That's just bullshit criteria from an organization that has clearly forgotten why it is there.
The fact that a Tasmanian side would service an existing AFL area and consolidate (and help re-establish) the game there is just as important as putting a club into a brand new market. That's justification enough (provided of course it presents a viable business plan, which I am sure it can).
Someone made the point on the main board which sums up the AFL - Tassie would have more chance of getting its own side if it were a Rugby League state than an AFL one. And I agree. Let that sink in.
As for your final comment, all the AFL needs to do is commit to a Tassie side in 2025 and I am sure a way will be found to keep AFL footy played there in the interim.