SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MAY 09: Lance Franklin of the Swans smiles during a Sydney Swans AFL training session at the Sydney Cricket Ground on May 9, 2018 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Sydney chairman Andrew Pridham has taken another swipe at the AFL, after Gold Coast spearhead Tom Lynch announced his plans to go to Richmond on Tuesday.

Pridham was at the Swans when Lance Franklin joined the club at the end of the 2013 season, before Sydney were subsequently hit with a trade ban for the 2014-15 trade periods.

The AFL integrity department conducted an inquiry into the Franklin signing and found the Swans did nothing wrong, although they still handed the club a two-year ban, which Pridham believes was still a "disgraceful" decision.

“It was one of the more disgraceful decisions that the AFL Commission has ever made,” Pridham told the Daily Telegraph.

“There is no satisfactory answer for the ban, having said that we have all moved on.”

Pridham then went on to joke about Lynch's move to Richmond, suggesting the Tigers should be hit with a longer ban, given Lynch came from a bottom four club.

“Given Richmond were premiers and Tom Lynch comes from one of the bottom clubs and we recruited Lance from the premiers I’m expecting at least a three-year trade ban for Richmond,” Pridham said.

The AFL investigated the Franklin contract because they believed Sydney had unfairly used their cost of living allowance (COLA), although Pridham said that wasn't the case.

“There is a total lack of understanding of how COLA worked,” Pridham said.

“The perception was COLA was a slush fund used to buy extra players but it wasn’t. It was a supplement in every contract of about 10 per cent in every contract. Players expected to receive COLA.”

Pridham believes the Swans should have been applauded for their long contract offer to Franklin, suggesting they were only "ahead of the curve" and nothing more.

“There was a big element of surprise in the industry but we were simply ahead of the curve offering a really long contract,” Pridham said.

“Ironically it’s now common place. In retrospect we were penalised for being ahead of the curve. I don’t think anyone would say it’s anything but a great move after the way Lance has performed over the last five years.”


  1. The guy is a tosser. They used the Cola to get more players, not to supplement contracts, were caught out and punished.

    Suffer. No one really listens to him anyway, do they?

  2. Yeah, that’s not what happened, that’s just what Eddie McGuire accused them of doing… Had they done that the AFL would have blocked the Franklin trade. The ban was petty and unjust, and only happened coz the AFL wanted Franklin at GWS.

  3. On the contrary Joe, you are the ”tosser” & indeed an absolute fool.
    As Pridham states…there has been no explanation or reason for this extreme penalty, simply because there
    has been no crime or wrong doing committed.
    In fact it is the AFL & their commissioners (Mike Fitzpatrick specifically) who are clearly at fault & should be
    dealt with.

  4. I don’t think so Lee.

    They were caught out using the Cola to bring in Buddy and Tippett and paid the price.

    So keep your obscenities to yourself if you don’t mind.

  5. Every business in Australia pays over to transfer staff to Sydney. Look at the price of Sydney housing and that should be enough to explain why COLA existed. Let’s all stop being myopic and accept the fact that cost of living in Sydney is the highest in Australia. I agree with Lee.

  6. Oh please, have a look at the cost of housing compared to Melb. Not that much different at all now.

    And besides that, these guys are being paid well over $300,000 for the also rans in the team let alone the stars. I could comfortably live with that in any city in Australia.

    COLA was a farce, they used it inn the wrong manner, were caught and punished.

    End of story.

  7. Perhaps the chairman should be asking how the recruiting department lost Mitchell and retained hannebury & jack………. that would be a better pointless rant surely……..

  8. Oh Joe you are a flog.
    What part of the 9% plus per contract per player that the AFL signed off on don’t you understand.
    The rookies to the top players got the same allowance, not the Eddie crap that he dished out to all.
    And yes almost an extra $100,000 per year on a $1m contract. Still within the rules but why not, anything to get away from Melbourne.
    Still it was agreed to remove the cola, for the younger guys, good luck in living Sydney at $60k per year and paying for a manager. I understand the manager gets 4%. Think about that Joe.
    I would also suggest it was criminal that the AFL banned the swans from trading for 2 years, for what??? That’s right, nothing. It punished the players from moving and removed the opportunity to make room in the total player payments, bye Mitchell.
    I would suggest that you open your mind to facts and listen to all and not the select big mouths in the industry. But that would be hard for you with you head so far up your backside.
    All clubs have to deal with keeping players, some pay players more then they are worth and in some cases players like Mitchell struggled to keep a regular spot in the top team and decide to leave. Would the swans like him still in the team… maybe yes, but life moves on.
    I struggle to understand how Richmond can afford good young talent being recent winners and GWS can not keep their young talent. But I can only suggest that both are playing within the same rules.
    As long as the AFL does not go down the same path as the NRL, player payments is the normal in rule breaking, just look at the Storm.

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