Mick Malthouse concedes his days as Carlton coach are numbered if his team keeps losing AFL matches.
The appalling performance against Collingwood on Friday night means the attention has shifted dramatically from Malthouse’s outstanding games record back to his coaching future.
On the night that Malthouse coached his 715th game, breaking Jock McHale’s 66-year record, and against their fiercest rivals, Carlton surrendered by 75 points.
Malthouse said the loss left him gutted, but he is adamant he still wants to coach.
His contract expires at the end of this season and the Carlton heirarchy have said they will not look at his future until then.
“I’m a realist – I know if we don’t win games of football, no board can sustain a coach who is not winning games,” Malthouse told 3AW.
“I am under no illusions whatsoever.
“But that doesn’t mean I don’t want to coach, that’s the way it works.”
Malthouse added he backed the club’s stance to the hilt.
“I don’t know when you actually say you can’t coach and don’t want to coach,” he said.
“I haven’t come across that moment yet.
“I don’t want to put a rift in the football club, because I’m on board with what the club wants to do.
“I am quite happy, I am quite content with the fact that the club will make the decision at the end of the year and I can live with that.”
Malthouse also backed new club president Mark LoGuidice.
“Mark does everything for Carlton – you cut his arm and it would bleed Blue blood,” he said.
“I am not going to question Mark on any of his comments.”
Separately, Malthouse wondered whether playing in Perth and Wellington in the space of three games, then a six-day break, helped contribute to their Friday night shocker.
“The players who I rely on heavily to have run in their legs, we just had none,” he said.
“Then it looks like you don’t attempt to get in position, you don’t run the football.”
Malthouse confirmed he had asked for Collingwood president Eddie McGuire to speak on Friday night at a pre-game function.
McGuire gave a moving speech honouring Malthouse and shook his hand.
The pair had a major falling out four years ago when Malthouse left the Magpies.
“I was delighted that he got up and spoke,” Malthouse said.
And the Blues coach said he had no problem with prominent Carlton fan and controversial businessman Geoffrey Edelsten sitting behind him in the coaches box on Friday night.
Edelsten’s presence generated plenty of social media comment.
Malthouse explained Edelsten was a member of the Inner Blue coterie group and one or two of them paid for the privilege of sitting in the Carlton box at every MCG game.
“I don’t know if that’s a bad look and that’s for others to view that,” Malthouse said.
“That’s not for me to question.
“They’re good guys, I don’t have any issue with them and they certainly don’t get in my way.”