McGuire: De Goey behaviour ‘unacceptable’
JORDAN De Goey has privately conceded he might have to apply a season-long alcohol ban after his Collingwood career was plunged into controversy again.
De Goey and his management will meet Pies bosses this morning and he is expected to be heavily punished after he was caught drink-driving.
The 21-year-old was said to be inconsolable after blowing 0.095 at a random breath test at Beaconsfield Parade in Port Melbourne at 8:25pm on Saturday night.
Collingwood president Eddie McGuire has this morning described De Goey's behaviour as "unacceptable" but added that the situation was a delicate one.
"You've got to be careful with these things not to overreact but at the same time get the right result for society, for our club, for everybody associated and for Jordan," McGuire said on Triple M.
"That's unacceptable behaviour from anybody.
"Jordan's got great family and we hope he gets himself right and gets the absolute potential out of his career."
When it was suggested the club is struggling with disciplinary issues - a notion made public by former Pies captain Tony Shaw - McGuire dismissed it as "dial-a-quote stuff".
"I don't know what Tony says.
"Tony is a great supporter of the club - great friend, one of our greatest ever people - but has no insight at all into what is happening at the club."
The incident comes a year after he was suspended for three games for lying to the club when he claimed a broken hand suffered in a bar fight in St Kilda was incurred while playing with his dog.
De Goey missed the first three matches of the season while he recovered from the injury and then served his club-imposed suspension.
He immediately called Pies footy boss Geoff Walsh after he failed the breath test.
"Club officials will meet on Monday to determine how this matter will be addressed," Collingwood said in a statement.
The Herald Sun has confirmed De Goey was on his green P-plates, which means he is unable to drink any alcohol while driving his car.
Not only has it put the early rounds of the season in jeopardy, it will likely see the Pies postpone any contract talks until much later in the year.
A brilliant start to the season would have seen contract talks expedited given his undoubted talent but he could now take a significant financial hit given his tarnished reputation and games missed.
In the space of 11 months he has now broken his hand in a pub fight, lied to the club about the origins of the injury, and blown nearly double the legal blood-alcohol limit.
He is aware when he starts drinking he finds it hard to stop and might have to instigate a booze ban for the foreseeable future.
De Goey was seen by many onlookers to be extremely drunk at the opening of the Albion Hotel earlier this month.
But while De Goey will have to disprove that bad-boy reputation, those close to him believe the penny had finally dropped about how hard he needed to work.
After being strongly told off by Collingwood players about arriving to training late and lacking attention to detail, he had put in months of hard work.
De Goey had spent the pre-season conducting extra sessions with captain Scott Pendlebury and assistant Garry Hocking and finally devoting himself to a full-blown weights program.
He had dropped his skinfolds and believed he was regaining some of the trust he had lost after last year's incident.
Instead of preparing for a breakout season, he could now miss a large chunk of the season.
After lying about the origins of his broken hand in March last year he missed three weeks recovering before a three-week ban kicked in that saw him return to the AFL in Round 7.
De Goey famously told coach Nathan Buckley he wouldn't let him down when drafted in November 2014 but he has becomes Collingwood's latest problem child.
The Pies were seen to have weeded out a group of ratbag players over recent years but have so often in recent years entered the season under a fog of controversy.
ASADA drug bans for players, disputed stories over illicit drug positives, a mysterious injury for recruit Jeremy Howe and contract dramas with players and coaches have all distracted from the main prize.
Collingwood's JLT Series starts on Thursday March 1, with teammates recently urging De Goey to concentrate even harder on his fitness.
On February 1 senior teammate Tyson Goldsack had said he still had work to do.
"He's definitely not as fit as he could be, but he is learning himself how fit he can be.
"In another four or five weeks, he'll be ready to go."
Immediately aware of the magnitude of his transgression, De Goey called Walsh minutes after being breath-tested.
He caught an Uber home after being caught but is yet to explain why he didn't initially catch a cab or Uber instead of driving home.
Teammate Jeremy Howe is believed to have gone to his home to console him, with a shattered De Goey aware of the ramifications of his act and likely heavy punishment.
Collingwood will need to balance a punishment that upholds their culture while giving De Goey some incentive to work hard towards a return.
In the first six rounds of the year Collingwood takes on 2017 finalists GWS, Adelaide, Essendon and Richmond as well as Hawthorn and Carlton, who easily beat the Pies last year.