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Eddie finds ally in bitter dispute

Mark Williams is a premiership coach and Hall of Fame member at Port Adelaide – so this has got to hurt the Power.Williams has sided with Collingwood president Eddie McGuire in Port’s renewed push to regularly wear its prison-bar guernsey in the AFL.Port were the Magpies before they entered the national competition and chairman David…

Mark Williams is a premiership coach and Hall of Fame member at Port Adelaide – so this has got to hurt the Power.

Williams has sided with Collingwood president Eddie McGuire in Port’s renewed push to regularly wear its prison-bar guernsey in the AFL.

Port were the Magpies before they entered the national competition and chairman David Koch has campaigned for the right to wear the traditional black-and-white striped jumper – which he says became the highest-selling guernsey in the AFL in 2020 after the Power wore it against the Crows in round two.

After getting permission from the league to wear it while celebrating its 150th year as a club, Port then launched a petition for the right to don it every season.

“We are not asking to be the Magpies in the AFL,” Koch said in June.

“All we are asking is that we are able to wear our historic black-and-white prison-bar guernsey in all Showdowns moving forward …

“We don’t believe what we are asking for is unreasonable and we look forward to submitting our official proposal to the AFL soon.”

McGuire threatened to take the AFL to court if it agreed to the move, claiming Port Adelaide had signed a contract when it entered the competition in 1997 never to wear black and white or a magpie on its uniform.

And he’s found an unlikely ally in Williams, who played more than 100 games for both Port Adelaide and Collingwood before coaching the Power from 1999-2010, including the 2004 flag.

“(When) Port Adelaide came into the AFL we became the Power with teal as well (as black and white in our guernsey),” Williams told The Front Bar on Thursday night.

“I’m fully supportive of Eddie. Collingwood has the black and white guernsey and Port Adelaide have got teal in their guernsey.”

Williams also objected to the jumper being described as the prison-bar guernsey, noting his father, Fos Williams, a legendary figure at Port Adelaide, never once used that term.

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