It’s been a long time since drinks for St Kilda fans who thought that one day in September would end their 44-year drought for a premiership when the ball cruelly bounced away from Stephen Milne in the drawn GF of 2010. Now their second coach of the decade has fallen and the club has not played finals since Ross Lyon left the club in 2011.
Alan Richardson departs the Saints with a 33% win record and gave a humble and self-less exit press conference this afternoon in Melbourne.
Richardson spoke to the media about the decision to part ways with the club.
“I’m proud of the fact myself and the coaching group have given it our all. I’m really proud of the way the group has responded,” Richardson told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday.
“There is certainly a disappointment to the fact that you can’t finish things off. It is not a job, it is a journey.
“You are here to win the flag. You are here to give ourselves the opportunity, we haven’t done that.”
Richardson didn’t speak a lot on his reasons to resign from the club but comments made by CEO Matt Finnis gave the public a broader understanding of what most people assumed.
“I want to thank Alan for his commitment and contribution over the last six years,” Finnis said.
“After six years under Alan’s leadership, the team performance and where we find ourselves isn’t where it needs to be.
“I want to thank Alan for the frank and open conversations we’ve had throughout this process.
“On Monday, Alan and I met again and agreed that the time was right to step aside. Alan, as he always has, put the club first.
“We’ve loved having (Alan) at our footy club. Every player who has departed our club under Alan’s leadership has done so with respect and dignity. That is the mark of the man.”
Richardson also hailed Seb Ross and Jarryn Geary with how they have brought the squad together and got the best out of themselves in the process – speaking of a positive future for the club.
“This group, they’re made of the right stuff. I think it is quite exciting. I’m really proud. I’m proud of Seb Ross. I’m proud of the evolution of Gears. They’ve done an outstanding job,” he added.
“I think the club has done a good job in the way it has managed its list. We’ve had a little bit of bad luck. It will be someone else coaching them but there is an enormous amount of talent on this list.
“I’m really confident this group has what it takes. I saw it on the weekend against Geelong.”
A gentleman in the football circles Richardson has no direct intentions and believes some greater time spent with his family will help to bring him back to a positive spirit.
Do you believe it was the right time for Richardson to depart?