Netball fans have erupted after news broke that the Collingwood Magpies are in danger of collapse.
Following seven seasons of poor performance and financial instability in the Super Netball league, players were informed of the tenuous situation early on Tuesday in a meeting at the AIA Centre with club CEO Craig Kelly.
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According to Code, players and staff “are all in a panic”.
Twitter users were quick to weigh in on the shock news.
“This Collingwood story has just made me really sad. There are SO many good ingredients there. I just want them to succeed – and this from someone who actively despises the footy team!” one netball fan said.
Another said: “I feel like this explains a lot. Even if players have only just been officially told, there would have been rumblings of this all season, so it’s no wonder they haven’t been able to spark.”
Another fan also hinted that the team’s affiliation to the AFL powerhouse of the same name was part of the problem.
“Something that has been repeatedly talked about is the fact that Collingwood is a really hard team to adopt for a lot of netball fans in Melbourne looking for a new team,” they said.
“Giants have had a lot of support in Sydney by the wider netball community. Just doesn’t translate here.”
While the netball team is backed by the Collingwood Football Club, Netball Australia has been in financial turmoil recently.
The organisation has struggled with a $4 million financial blackhole, despite the state government’s Visit Victoria covering the $15 million that was sensationally pulled by Gina Rinehart last year.
As it stands, the Super Netball league has zero players contracted for the 2024 season, with every player’s agreement set to expire at the end of the 2023 season.
This comes as a result of there being no valid Collective Player’s Agreement (CPA) from Netball Australia beyond September 2023.
According to the report, the Victorian government could be an option to help save the cash-strapped team.
However, that move might be considered controversial given the Magpies are backed by a powerhouse AFL club.
The Melbourne Vixen are the No.1 netball team in the state, have won a Super Netball League grand final, and lost the grand final last season.
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