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The one thing McLachlan should do before his tenure as AFL CEO ends


Brownlow Medallist Gerard Healy has called on AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan and league bosses to alter the fixture as the game is “cannibalising” itself.

Saturday night games were regularly played at the same time last season and Healy has called for more standalone fixtures in 2022.

“I’ve made this point many, many times,” the ex-Demon and Swan told Sportsday.

“The one thing that Gill McLachlan should do before he leaves his tenure is to sort out the game cannibalising itself when you’ve got one game going up against the other on a Saturday night.

“We should be able to come up with a fixture where nine games are played as standalone (games) or the worst scenario, you have two games on a Sunday afternoon going head-to-head.”

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Healy is also in favour of a ‘Festival of Footy’ – like we saw in 2020 – being included in the AFL fixture next year.

“We had game after game after game, it was fantastic, it was only for two weeks,” the three-time All-Australian said.

“I think it would be great to start with a ‘Festival of Footy’. You’ve got Wednesday, Thursday and Friday … I just think it’s a great way to start.

“That means you’ve got six teams getting a standalone game straight away.”

The AFL is considering opening the 2022 season on a Wednesday night.

McLachlan has served as the AFL’s chief executive since succeeding Andrew Demetriou in April 2014.

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