Ben Rutten’s role as coach of Essendon appears safe for now after a day of conflicting reports, with the Bombers confirming the resignation of club president Paul Brasher.
- Embattled Bombers coach Ben Rutten will not be sacked following a chaotic day at Essendon
- However, club president Paul Brasher has resigned from his position
- Dave Barham will take over from Brasher
Multiple reports suggested Rutten would be sacked as coach after a disastrous 84-point loss to Port Adelaide on Sunday afternoon.
The loss to the Power capped a disappointing season that has seen the Bombers languishing in 15th spot after making the finals last year.
There was speculation Essendon would join GWS and North Melbourne in making a bid to secure the services of four-time premiership coach Clarkson for next season.
Following the board meeting on Monday, Bombers chief executive Xavier Campbell spoke briefly to reporters.
“Assets [still] our coach of the footy club, there’s ongoing discussions at board level, they will continue this week,” Campbell said outside the club’s headquarters at Tullamarine.
“There will be a statement from the club later today regarding the leadership of the board, and also further analysis the board want to do around our football program to drive improvement.”
Campbell said he had not spoken to Alastair Clarkson.
The club later announced that Brasher would leave his role as Essendon president with Dave Barham to take over.
Earlier in the season, Brasher announced an internal review of the club, later saying that the review would lead to “incremental” rather than “transformational” change.
The Bombers have had a tough season, winning only two of their first 12 games in 2022, before recovering to win five of their last nine.
However scrutiny on the club has intensified following Essendon’s poor performances, with a 27-point loss to GWS followed by the low point on the weekend, where the Bombers conceded 146 points at home to Port Adelaide, the team’s worst result of the season.
Essendon made the finals last year in Rutten’s first full season in charge after a “handover” from John Worsfold following the 2020 season.