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Riewoldt on McGuire’s “rogue” pitch to make him a Magpie


St Kilda champion Nick Riewoldt has given insight into Eddie McGuire’s pitch to lure him to Collingwood at the end of 2013.

The meeting took place at McGuire’s home where the Magpies president proposed for Riewoldt to finish his career in the black and white.

The Saints were at the beginning of a rebuilding phase having finished the campaign in 16th with just five wins.

McGuire believed Riewoldt could have been the Pies’ version of Brian Lake, with the ex-Bulldog winning a Norm Smith Medal and a premiership in his first year at Hawthorn.

“BJ (Brendon Goddard) left, Dal (Nick Dal Santo) left and I had a meeting with Collingwood. It was Eddie at his best," Riewoldt told SEN Breakfast.

“I walked in the door and he (Eddie McGuire) goes: ‘I want to get you to Collingwood. I know what’s going on’. He knew I was flying out the next day to go Texas … sat on the plane, put my seatbelt on and then a message came through from Eddie saying: ‘I just want to leave you with two words: Brian Lake’.

“Brian had just gone to Hawthorn from the Bulldogs; won the Norm Smith and you can be next year’s Brian Lake.”

Riewoldt admired McGuire’s bold approach but the thought of remaining a one-club player at St Kilda saw him stay at Moorabbin.

“He knew it was a long shot, but he was pitching," the former St Kilda captain said.

“This is why if Eddie is your president, you love it, because he goes outside the square. If he thinks something is unobtainable, it doesn’t matter, he goes for it.

“We didn’t get into the sheetage (money), I’m not even sure that Nathan Buckley (coach) and Derek Hine (list boss) knew about it, he may have gone a little bit rogue.

“But it was about the opportunity to finish my career at a big club, the direction the Saints were heading was clearly a transition.

"There was a bit of thinking done, but at the time, the lure of being a one-club player and what that would mean for the rest of my life was greater than rolling the dice.”

Riewoldt retired at the end of 2017 after booting 718 goals in 336 games for the Saints.

Listen to Nick Riewoldt’s chat on SEN Breakfast in the player below

Nick RIEWOLDT St Kilda Collingwood SEN Breakfast

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