Sources close to Essendon Captain, Jobe Watson, are reporting that new Essendon Coach/Golden Boy James Hird has taken the ax to two of last years list. It is reported by this source that Jay Neagle and Jarrod Atkinson have both been given their marching orders from Windy Hill. Neagle, recuited under the Father/son rule (he is Merv Neagle’s son), but could never quite cement his spot in the line-up only playing 8 games in 2010 to bring his career tally to 28 after debuting in 2007. He was seen as the replacement for Matthew Lloyd but may be a victim of the changing pace of the game. In those 28 games he only manage 41 goals. There is some rumors in Bombers circles that late appearance to training sessions sealed his delisting but that if he improves his discipline that he may get back on the Bombers rookie list. There might also been issues about his condition and training ethic. Atkinson who debuted in 2008 was also let go. He managed 7 games in 2010 to bring his career total to 17 games.
Essendon have made the following statement on this issue:
Essendon Football Club today confirmed the delistings of Jay Neagle and Jarrod Atkinson. General Manager of Football Operations Paul Hamilton said delistings finalised the Club’s position prior to the draft. “These final decisions were made following the Club’s first 10 days of training and are a reflection of the standards that the coaching panel wish to see the group adhere to,” Hamilton said. Neagle has been invited to continue to train with the club until the rookie draft where he will be given full consideration. Bachar Houli has also been delisted. Essendon would like to thank each of these players for their contribution to the Club and wishes them well in their future endeavours.