North Melbourne coach Brad Scott wants Brent Harvey to keep playing next AFL season, but first and foremost it must work for the club.
Harvey’s playing future became a touchy subject around his 400-game milestone a week ago.
Some in the media questioned Scott’s answers when inevitably he was asked about whether Harvey might keep playing next season.
If the 37-year-old goes on, he is a chance to break Michael Tuck’s games record of 426.
But Scott has said repeatedly that no decision will be made until later this season.
“I’m genuinely hopeful the best decision will be made for both (North and Harvey),” Scott told Channel Nine’s The Footy Show.
“At the moment, he’s playing terrific footy and we’ve won the last four games.
“If that continues, hopefully it’s a good outcome for everyone.
“If he keeps doing what he’s doing, I want him to play on.”
While Harvey is one of the most popular figures in North’s history, Scott is adamant that sentiment can play no part in the decision.
“The individual never comes ahead of the club,” Scott said.
“It’s a romantic notion that’s going to be spoken about a lot, that there’s a potential record there.
“But … he plays for team success.
“If the club starts putting the individual ahead of the club, then you’re on the spiral downwards.”
Scott said he and Harvey were speaking formally and informally about the future.
“He’s really aware of the situation and if anyone is concerned about my comments … they should ask Boomer what he thinks,” the coach said.
“I don’t want to speak for him – if you ask him, he’ll tell you.
“He wants to play for team success and if he can play a part in that, he’ll play on.
“But if he can’t, he won’t.”