Head of Manly supporter group says fans will be ‘out for blood’ over pride jersey fiasco – and accuses club chairman of trying to ‘buddy up to Hugh Jackman’ with rainbow stripGroup spokesman Robert Simeon says fans are furious with club management Claimed Scott Penn is incompetent for not anticipating players’ boycott Accused chairman of launching initiative to make friends with Hugh Jackman
The head of the Sea Eagles’ supporters group believes the club’s fans are so angry over how club management have handled the pride jersey furore that they will be ‘out for blood’.
Manly Supporters Group spokesman Robert Simeon also accused team owner and chairman Scott Penn of backing the rainbow strip because he is ‘trying to buddy up with Hugh Jackman‘ after a picture emerged of the Hollywood star wearing the top two weeks ago.
Club bosses have been blasted for not consulting with players before the pride jersey was launched on Monday, resulting in stars Josh Aloiai, Jason Saab, Christian Tuipulotu, Josh Schuster, Haumole Olakau’atu, Tolu Koula and Toafofoa Sipley standing down from Thursday night’s crunch game against the Roosters because the strip clashed with their cultural and religious beliefs.
Manly owner and chairman Scott Penn (pictured) has been branded incompetent for not knowing how Polynesian players would react to the rainbow strip intiative
Penn was also accused of green-lighting the inclusive strip to ‘buddy up’ to Hugh Jackman, who is pictured wearing the jersey weeks before the players knew about it
Simeon accused Penn of being ignorant of the players’ stance on the subject and said fans will be calling for heads to roll.
‘The Polynesian players are deeply religious and if the chairman of the Manly Sea Eagles is only just working that out now, it just highlights how little he actually knows about the make up of these people,’ he told Sunrise on Thursday.
‘I just think he’s trying to buddy up with Hugh Jackman. I’m not sure if Hugh Jackman is interested in that.’
Sunrise reported that Jackman and Chris Hemsworth – who also reportedly knew about the rainbow jersey long before the players found out – could be there when the Sea Eagles take on the Roosters at their home ground on Friday night.
Furious Many Supporters Group spokesperson Robert Simeon (pictured) said Sea Eagles fans are so angry about how the fiasco has been handled that they’ll be ‘out for blood’
A Manly die-hard, Jackman received a pride jersey two weeks ago, which he proudly donned for a photo to help promote Thursday night’s blockbuster.
Jackman posed for the photo as a favour to his great mate Sydney radio star Gus Worland to help promote the inaugural Gotcha4Life Cup, The Australian reported.
The cup, played between the Manly Sea Eagles and the Sydney Roosters, is what the jerseys were made for.
However, the boycotting stars have been banned from attending after police raised concerns for their safety in a meeting with club representatives.
Northern Beaches Police Crime Co-ordinator Sergeant Damon Flakelar spoke to coach Des Hasler, interim CEO Gary Wolman and Manly head of operations and events Shelley O’Malley – with the club trio deciding it was best the players stay away to ensure their safety.
Both the Sea Eagles and police felt concerns could be ‘heightened’ in the crowd if the players watched their teammates in the flesh at Brookvale Oval.
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