Essendon midfielder David Zaharakis has revealed that the banned players are starting to struggle with the fact that they're playing this season as the season starts to gather momentum.
The Bomber midfielder, who has enjoyed a terrific start to the season, says his team-mates, that are currently training together alone are planning an overseas trip in the coming weeks, to get away from the struggle of not playing this season.
ZAHARAKIS tells radio he chose not to do supplement programme and there was no issue. Yet another lie smashed that Hird pressured players.— Name cannot be blank (@Hurleystaxi) April 6, 2016
“A lot of the guys are struggling a little bit now that games have started,” he said on Radio Sports Network this morning.
“It wasn’t reality until that point that once you start seeing your team playing for four points and you can’t be out there that that’s your livelihood taken away from you. Some guys are going to go away this year … which’ll be great.
“I honestly don’t know (if they’ll all come back). Some players are at different stages in their career.
“They’re required Essendon players. I want them to all come back and play for the footy club. They’re an important 12 and are all senior players.
“For us moving forward, to build on what we’re going to build this year and the young guys we’re going to blood in the senior side this year, along with them coming back next year, it’s definitely something that we need for the footy club moving forward.”
Zaharakis chose not to participate in the injection regime because of his fear of needles and says he had no idea that, that specific decision would have the long-term effects it has had today.
Joe Daniher: 'Zaka (Zaharakis) has put in a lot of hard work and he is a great role model for the young guys at the club'— 3AW Sports Today (@3AWSportsToday) April 4, 2016
“It was just a personal choice from me. I just don’t like things getting injected into me, that’s just a personal opinion of mine.
“You get cortisone and that sort of thing. I don’t like the other side of it and that was a personal choice. Everyone has their own choices. We always stand by that we did nothing wrong and that everything was above-board.
“At the time, you don’t think you’re making a decision with that much weight. It was just sort of a blasé decision at the time.”
One of the suspended 12 players has already committed to playing for the club next season, with midfielder Heath Hocking signing a new deal to return to the club.
All Australian defenders Cale Hooker and Michael Hurley remain hot property with Hooker looking the most likely to leave the club at the end of the season, with Fox Footy reporting last month that a five year deal has been tabled to Hooker by Fremantle.