Liddle did not address reported differences between he and Silvagni but towed party line concerns over conflict of interest. Silvagni’s sons, Jack and Ben, are on Carlton’s playing list.
“We were completely transparent with the messaging around Stephen’s contract not being renewed,” Liddle responded.
“To have the club’s most senior list management staff member not take part in key discussions and decisions regarding the playing list and the broader operations of the football department became an increasingly challenging issue that was not in the best interests of the Carlton Football Club.”
It was reported last week that Silvagni was made aware before the October trade period commenced that his contract would not be renewed, meaning the 52-year-old completed the trade and free agency period, the national and rookie drafts in late November with that knowledge.
“I am appalled by the board decision to remove Stephen Silvagni from his position. Even more appalling was the decision to use his two sons as justification. The CEO has a lot to answer for as does the rest of the board. Is this how you treat the person who has rebuilt the list?” another fan observed.
Liddle again borrowed from a Carlton statement issued last week that referenced “tough decisions”.
“I accept and acknowledge that you are not happy with the decision,” he said.
“No one is questioning the role that Stephen played in rebuilding the list. I and others at the club have noted on many occasions the improvements that have been made. The easy decision would have been to let the situation continue, which was not seeing the football department running at its optimal level. The much tougher decision is to bring someone else in who can play a part in all relevant decisions and discussions that take place within the football department.”
Liddle in a separate response conveyed confidence that the controversy surrounding Silvagni would not have a deeper impact come the new AFL season.
“Stephen’s tenure was not terminated early. His contract came to an end and the decision was made to not renew it. I accept some members may not be happy.
“I do however have great faith in our leadership, both on and off the field, within the football department, to ensure there is no on-field impact.”
LoGiudice said he was happy with the quality of the club’s list.
“We are not disappointed with our lists. In fact, we are genuinely excited about the talent we have across all of our teams. We are looking forward to both our upcoming men’s and women’s seasons,” LoGiudice said.