Thompson expects banned players to sue AFL

Former Essendon coach Mark Thompson expects the AFL club’s banned players to sue for $50 million over the long-running supplements scandal.

While the three-time premiership coach at Geelong said he would not join the legal action, he said the 34 current and past players would soon seek damages from the AFL.

Of those players, 17 are still playing in the AFL, with 12 at Essendon and five at other clubs.

They are in the midst of a last-ditch Swiss appeal to clear their names of the doping suspensions.

“They’ve lost three years, four years now,” Thompson told Triple M.

“And I don’t think it will be over next year, either.

“I think it’s just been handled poorly – I think we all admit that.

“They will start to sue … about $50 million, probably.

“I just know it is going to happen.

“I’m not interested in doing it, no.”

It is expected that the banned players will settle out of court with Essendon.

The AFL fined Thompson for his part in the supplements regime that has done so much damage to the Bombers.

Thompson was an assistant coach under James Hird at the time of the regime in 2011-12.

The Essendon premiership captain coached the club in 2014 while James Hird served a 12-month AFL suspension.

Thompson also pleaded with sports scientist Stephen Dank to reveal what was given to the players in the supplements program.

“That is the only thing that matters – nobody cares who is guilty or not,” Thompson said.

“They (the players) just want to know.”

Thompson and Dank have been in the news this week, with the former Essendon captain and coach promoting his autobiography.

Police are investigating after Dank’s house was peppered with bullets early on Saturday morning.

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