Sacking Matthew Primus has not only set back Port Adelaide a year, it’s papering over the wider cracks that exist.
Hitting the reset button at a football club seems to be the commonplace call in the modern era. Must we forget the calls for the head of Brad Scott and Brett Ratten, even Nathan Buckley after coaching only three games of football?
The plans put in place for certain players (training, development, gym work, tactical positioning) will all be ripped up and/or altered, reprogramming them over the pre-season and having to start the whole process again.
Considering there isn’t an abundance of talent in the youth group at Port Adelaide, they could have been trained into decent role players until suitable and more skilful replacements were found.
Expecting Primus to dramatically alter a list, which was in complete shambles and freefall in the last two years of Mark Williams’ tenure, in eighteen months is asking for miracles.
What seems to even strengthen the notion that this decision was made with too much haste is that sources confirm Primus as early as next week was to be up for a contract review. What even implicates Port further in acting in a complete knee-jerk manner is the fact that the contract review was most likely going to have Primus as the senior coach for a further two years.
Port CEO Keith Thomas at the press conference after the fallout only confirmed that Port acted irrationally and has done the opposite to what a composed and full review was supposed to do.
He quipped that “Unfortunately, our performances – particularly in the second half of this year – have not demonstrated the rate of progress or consistency that we expected.”
Let’s ignore the fact that Port Adelaide has a substandard list that would rival any top-tier SANFL team to begin with, but adding in the fact that they have been utterly overwhelmed with injuries only compounds the utter thoughtlessness in which the administration has acted.
Senior players such as Hamish Harlett, Jay Schultz, Robbie Gray and Brett Renouf have missed quite or all of that suggested period of football, whilst Travis Boak and Troy Chaplin have been pondering their futures elsewhere.
Then further add the dismal performances of senior players and players who have participated in barely any football or are substandard to plug those holes, and you have the mess the Power are in now.
To suggest that nearly two months of football is enough to judge an entire coach’s work is madness, and becomes full-blown insanity once you realise how far back Primus was coming from when he inherited such an incredibly poor list and pathetically funded football department.
All Port Adelaide accomplished from booting Matthew Primus is set the club back eighteen months, and essentially created an atmosphere in which Travis Boak and Troy Chaplin would want out.