Fitzgerald on the state of AFL

MIKE FITZPATRICK ON…

* Western Bulldogs’ 2016 flag: “It meant that a lot of those (equalisation) policies in my view had come through and were working.”

* James Hird: “It’s a very forgiving code … I don’t believe the AFL has in any way harassed or sought to undermine his return to the game.”

* Expansion in western Sydney and Gold Coast: “Until Gary Ablett was hurt (in 2014, Gold Coast) was sitting second or third, and were heading for finals. GWS in many ways have used the opportunities. Both sides were given concessions. Both have used them in certain ways. I think Gold Coast have just been unlucky.”

* Further expansion: “It’s not totally clear where you would go in Australia with another team. It will be hard to add teams from here. We’re covering most of the country’s population.”

* Melbourne’s stadiums: “We’re very keen to upgrade Etihad. We’re finding it difficult to see how another stadium would work near the MCG.”

* His style as ‘Iron Mike’: “If you’re in footy for any length of time you’ll have a series of robust conversations.”

* Interchange rotations: “30 or 40 would be the right number.”

* His unwavering support for a day-time grand final: “I’m probably at 3 o’clock now. I’ve moved from 2.30. I won’t make the final decision on this.”

* Career highlight: “It’s hard to beat winning flags.”

* All Offers and Promotions posted in this article excludes NSW residents.
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