Adem Yze has emerged as the front-runner to replace Ben Rutten at Essendon, while Brad Scott could yet throw his hat in the ring.
It comes as Dons great and former coach James Hird appears to have run his race, with an “apprenticeship” elsewhere deemed a necessity before any fairytale return.
The race to the Essendon coaching job is heating up, with 7News Melbourne Tom Browne reporting the Bombers want to name their coach by the end of next week.
“It’s my understanding Essendon wants to appoint a coach by the end of next week,” Browne reported.
“You’d have to rate Yze a big, big chance.”
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His report comes after Yze was interviewed for a second time on Wednesday, leading to speculation the Demons great, who has coached at Hawthorn alongside Alastair Clarkson and at Melbourne, is in the box seat to replace Rutten, who was unceremoniously let go following a dramatic and ugly final fortnight this season.
“Adam Yze was interviewed today for a second interview at Essendon – I do not think it’s a secret now,” The Herald Sun’s Mark Robinson said on AFL 360.
“I do not know how many other people they’ve got planned to interview. In my understanding Brad Scott is still waiting until after the Grand Final to decide whether he is going to go through the process.
“Clearly if Adam Yze is getting a second interview that would surge him into favoritism for the Essendon job, in my opinion.”
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Hawthorn legend Jordan Lewis, who’s part of the Essendon coaching selection panel, also confirmed a decision is expected to be made next week.
The Age’s Caroline Wilson agreed Yze was the favorite, while adding that current Dons assistant Blake Caracella could also be a late contender once he returns from Europe on Thursday.
“James Hird won’t get the job, and the advice to James is that he needs to do an apprenticeship elsewhere,” Wilson said on 9 Footy Classified.
“Adem Yze is clearly the favorite.
“The club has spoken to (him); the club has envisioned him, if he does get the job, potentially bringing Mark Williams to the club with him.
“Of those four on the left (Yze, Brendon Lade, Dean Solomon, James Hird), he is the hot favorite.
“Brad Scott could throw his hat into the ring next week, Essendon has spoken to him, he won’t do anything until after the premiership has been done and won but Adem Yze might have blown them away, who knows.
She added: “There is a wrinkle here though, Blake Caracella, an Essendon assistant coach, who has been a part of the review has been interviewed.
“He’s in Europe, he’s getting back in the next 24 hours, my understanding is that upon his return he’s likely to throw his hat in the senior coaching ring. I’m not sure if Blake Caracella will be seriously considered for the job, I’m not sure how he’s come out of the review, I know he’s been interviewed twice, including by Brendan McCartney and Jordan Lewis. “