North Melbourne veteran Brent Harvey admits he would have “broken down” had he fronted the media to speak about the end of his Kangaroos career.
The AFL games record holder was of the belief he had another year in him at the Kangaroos but was told by the club on Wednesday, along with three other veterans, his contract wouldn’t be renewed for 2017.
Harvey posted a heartfelt message on Facebook on Thursday thanking fans for their support, saying he’ll talk publicly “when the time is right.
“I was given the opportunity, along with Drewy (Petrie), Spud (Michael Firrito) and Dal (Nick Dal Santo), to speak to the media yesterday but physically couldn’t,” the 38-year-old wrote.
“I would have broken down and didn’t want to do that. I want to be clear that is (sic) wasn’t because we were angry, like some people are suggesting.”
Harvey, who has played 430 games for the Kangaroos, said the news left him flat and sad but he held no ill-feelings towards coach Brad Scott.
“I need you all to know that I’m OK with what’s happened,” he wrote.
“Brad and those in charge had a tough decision to make. I’m not angry at them about it at all.
“More than anything, I appreciate Brad’s honesty because I put him in a difficult situation when I asked to know where I stood.
“He did the right thing and told us all the truth.”
Harvey was approached by Carlton and Hawthorn at times in his career but opted to stay at Arden St because the club meant the world to him.
He may now be forced to consider playing against the Kangaroos if he wishes to continue his AFL career.
But with finals looming, Harvey said thoughts of new contracts had not entered his mind.
“This has all happened so fast and I haven’t had a chance to consider what’s next,” he wrote.
“After the season, I will weigh everything up with my family and manager.”
Harvey’s manager Shane Casley believes offers from rival clubs won’t surface until after the current season.
“We’ll catch up once the season is over and chat about all that,” Casley told radio station RSN927 on Thursday.
“I wouldn’t expect that they will while the footy season is on.”
Harvey, who will turn 39 next May, approached the Kangaroos as recently as the past month to tell the club he could play another season.
North Melbourne axed 1,337 games of AFL experience on Wednesday, with the contracts of Harvey, All-Australian Petrie, Firrito and Dal Santo not renewed for 2017.