LATEST: AFL makes decision on 2021 Grand Final
This year’s AFL grand final will be played in Perth, if the MCG cannot host a crowd due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Given Victoria’s coronavirus case numbers, that looks incredibly unlikely.
The AFL has just announced the plan for the finals series at a press conference.
Gillon McLachlan said crowd capacity played a significant factor in Optus Stadium getting the nod.
“If we are unable to play at the MCG, the Grand Final will be at Optus Stadium, our priority clearly will be the health and safety of the West Australian community,” he said.
“The capacity available at Optus Stadium is 100 per cent. It’s pretty compelling to have as many people as we can see the biggest and best sporting event in the country.”
He hopes to make a final decision “early next week” after speaking with the Victorian government.
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Premier Mark McGowan said it is exciting news for West Australian football fans.
“Obviously very sad for our friends in Victoria who could miss out on hosting the traditional MCG Grand Final for the second year in a row,” he said.
“Our position remains that we hope Victoria – and all states currently impacted by COVID – are able to crush the Delta variant as soon as possible.
“If a decision is made by the AFL to move the Grand Final to Perth, we can assure the community that WA’s strict COVID-safe protocols and arrangements would be in place so that safety remains the top priority.
“WA has some of the best facilities and the safest environment to host major events.
“The scale of an AFL grand final is not lost on WA, we are footy state after all. If we get the nod from the AFL, then we will certainly do the occasion justice.”
6PR Football’s Adam Papalia breaks down today’s announcement.
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