Essendon coach Ben Rutten says he “deserved better” following his treatment by the club, but maintains he still wants to keep his job for next season.
- The Essendon board will meet today to decide Rutten’s future as coach
- Rutten says he is committed to coaching the Bombers next season
- The Bombers failed to lure Alastair Clarkson to the club
Rutten is contracted for 2023 but could be sacked after an Essendon board meeting later today, just days after the club’s botched attempt to lure now-North Melbourne coach Alastair Clarkson
He was emotional in Essendon’s rooms after the 66-point loss to Richmond at the MCG on Saturday night, the result bringing down the curtain on the Bombers’ dismal season.
They won only seven of their 22 matches to finish in 15th place on the ladder, a season after making the finals under Rutten.
He said his treatment by the club during the week was “disappointing”, but he believed he could still mend bridges if handed a reprieve.
“I probably think I deserved better,” Rutten told a post-match media conference.
“As a club, we need to come together as a whole football club and we need to stick to a plan, put our heads down, bum up and do the work.
“There’s no other way. There’s no other way for this football club to get back to where it wants to be.”
Rutten said he wanted to coach the Bombers in 2023.
“I am committed to coaching this footy club, that is what I signed up for,” he said.
“I did not put my hand up to coach this club because I thought it would be easy, I did because I thought I could make a difference.
“I signed up and committed to give my service to the Essendon football club and its supporters, its member and the players.
“That is what I want to do, I want to see it through.”
Rutten said he had “no idea” what decision would be made at the club’s board meeting.
“All I know is there is a board meeting and I am not involved in it,” he said.