Crow Mitch McGovern, celebrating a goal with teammate Richard Douglas against North Melbourne in round 22, wants out of the club. Picture: Sarah Reed.
Crow Mitch McGovern, celebrating a goal with teammate Richard Douglas against North Melbourne in round 22, wants out of the club. Picture: Sarah Reed.

Crows a ‘great environment’, no cultural problem: Betts

STAR forward Eddie Betts insists Adelaide does not have a cultural problem, despite Mitch McGovern being the latest key player to want out of the club.

McGovern's trade request this week follows the departures of fellow guns Jake Lever, Charlie Cameron, Patrick Dangerfield, Jack Gunston, Phil Davis, Kurt Tippett and Nathan Bock in recent years.

"There is not a cultural problem at the Adelaide footy club,'' Betts said.

"It's a great environment, especially for the players. We go there and it's like the best job in the world.

Carlton's Jack Silvagni tackled by Adelaide's Eddie Betts on Saturday. Picture: Michael Klein
Carlton's Jack Silvagni tackled by Adelaide's Eddie Betts on Saturday. Picture: Michael Klein

"You walk into the footy club with 44 of your best mates. I've always said it's the best job in the world but it's probably one of the most demanding jobs in the world because of the pressures of AFL footy, especially on young kids.''

Betts said he is good mates with fellow forward McGovern and is "very sad'' that he has asked for a trade.

He said he is not clear as to why Western Australian McGovern wants to leave, with Victorian club and wooden spooner Carlton the favourite to land him.

Mitch McGovern and Eddie Betts celebrate a goal last year. Picture: James Elsby/AFL Media/Getty Images)
Mitch McGovern and Eddie Betts celebrate a goal last year. Picture: James Elsby/AFL Media/Getty Images)

"No, not really,'' Betts told radio FIVEaa when asked if he knew McGovern's reasons for wanting to depart just one year into a three-year deal.

"I haven't spoken to him yet and I guess that's for Mitch, his family and management to work out. I think he was a little bit unhappy but that's what happens when you are injured, you are not playing and we are losing as well.

"It's not a fun environment to be in when you are losing. It's very sad to see him request a trade because I am pretty close to Mitch and he's an important player for us.

"When he's down in our forward line he takes the No. 1 defender or the second defender and he's a crucial part to our forward line who I don't want to see go.''

Small goalsneak Betts said while the Crows don't have a cultural problem they cannot deny that they have struggled to keep players at the club.

"There's a lot of talk about drafting players from interstate because they are just going to leave in two or three years time,'' he said.

"We've seen it with the Adelaide footy club, whether you like it or not. A lot of great players who have played for the Crows have picked up and left, maybe some are homesick.''

Betts downplayed Collective Mind's press conference on Monday where the Crows' infamous pre-season camp on the Gold Coast again reared its ugly head.

"It was a little bit annoying because we've moved on,'' he said.

"We haven't really forgotten about it because the camp is always going to be labelled with the Adelaide Crows.

"No matter whether we try to quash it or push it under the table, I guarantee next year it will pop up somewhere, the Collective Mind (scenario).

"It was a bit annoying it came back up but we just didn't really care to be honest. They wanted to come out and tell their events of what happened but we've just moved on and are looking forward to 2019.''

Betts said Adelaide's Mad Monday celebrations were a quiet affair this year, with the players deciding not to dress up in costumes.

"It was a nice, tame get together,''' he said.

"It wasn't too big or out of control like recent years. We said no dress-ups, dress normally, and it wasn't even like a Mad Monday.

"We had staff there, coaches there, everyone together, which was good.''

andrew.capel@news.com.au