Collingwood defender Tom Langdon to retire


Collingwood defender Tom Langdon has succumbed to injury and made the call to retire.

Langdon has battled to overcome serious knee trouble and has decided he cannot push his body to get back to the elite level.

Tom Langdon seriously injured his knee in round nine of 2019.Credit:Getty Images

Sources said the club would make an announcement later today and Langdon would be delisted as a retirement for the purposes of list lodgement.

The 26-year-old intercept marking defender has not played since round nine of 2019 as he struggled to overcome chronic knee problems.



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Eagles’ Langdon deal kicks off AFL trades


West Coast have snared Greater Western Sydney small forward Zac Langdon in the first deal of a slow start to the AFL trade period.

The Eagles flipped their third-round draft pick, currently No.54, to the Giants for Langdon, who booted 23 goals in 31 games across three seasons for GWS before requesting a trade home to Western Australia.

“Our club tracked Zac closely before he was drafted in 2017 and he has shown he can apply excellent forward pressure and hit the scoreboard at AFL level,” West Coast list manager Darren Glass said.

“He is also an elite runner and we feel he will add skill and speed to our attacking mix.

“We are confident that Zac’s best footy is still ahead of him.”

While West Coast and GWS kicked off proceedings, all eyes are on Adelaide, who have until 5pm AEDT on Wednesday to decide if they will match St Kilda’s bid for restricted free agent Brad Crouch or let him walk.

Last week, Adelaide head of football Adam Kelly indicated the Crows would match the bid if the Saints’ offer didn’t draw pick two as compensation.

He added that Adelaide were prepared to keep Crouch if a trade couldn’t be agreed.

Speculation abounds that the Crows would only be given a second-round compensation, around pick 23, but selections are expected to be further pushed back by academy bids.

If Adelaide match St Kilda’s offer, they will be the second team to take the unusual step this year after Greater Western Sydney matched Geelong’s offer to Jeremy Cameron.

The Giants and Cats will head to the trade table with the Cats’ bevy of first-round picks – currently 13, 15 and 20 – firmly in the Giants’ sights.

Several key forwards are set for moves this off-season.

GWS will complete a deal for Fremantle forward Jesse Hogan – a cut-price replacement for Cameron – at some point in the trade period while North Melbourne goal kicker Ben Brown has requested a trade to Melbourne.

Essendon will be busy as they negotiate deals to send Adam Saad to Carlton and Orazio Fantasia to Port Adelaide, while also working to secure GWS young gun Jye Caldwell.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the trade period is being conducted virtually with the AFL Review Centre being used as the main hub.

Clubs negotiate in virtual meetings and deals will be submitted via an online trade system.





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Langdon latest Giant to request AFL trade


West Coast have confirmed forward Zac Langdon is the latest Greater Western Sydney to want out of the Giants.

The Eagles are confident they will land the 24-year-old during the AFL’s trade period.

“Zac is keen to come back to Perth and play for the Eagles and we’re keen to have him on board,” West Coast football manager Craig Vozzo told ABC radio.

“We’ve already had some productive discussion with Zac’s management Colin Young and also (Greater Western Sydney football boss) Jason McCartney.

“We’re confident that should be a fairly straightforward deal.”

Langdon becomes the sixth Giants players to officially want out of the club, joining star forward Jeremy Cameron, defenders Aidan Corr and Zac Williams and first-round draft picks Jackson Hately and Jye Caldwell.

Langdon has kicked 23 goals for the Giants since making his AFL debut in 2018.

Meanwhile, St Kilda have lodged a contract offer with outgoing Adelaide midfielder Brad Crouch before the AFL free agency period.

Last week, restricted free agent Crouch nominated the Saints as his preferred destination.

Whether Adelaide accept a compensation draft pick or force a trade will depend on the level of compensation they are offered – which is tied to St Kilda’s contract offer – when the free agency period opens on Friday.

“I’m not sure what the compensation will look like for the Crows,” St Kilda list manager James Gallagher told AFL Trade Radio.

“We’ve put what we think is a really fair deal to Brad, taking all things into consideration.

“We are still working through the finer points of it with his management over the course of the next few days as we head into free agency.

“I think you’ll get a reasonable idea on what the deal looks like when the compensation is announced shortly after we lodge with the AFL.”

Gallagher said the Saints were in the final stages of securing a new contract for defender Ben Paton and also expected contracted duo Luke Dunstan and Jimmy Webster to stay put.

St Kilda have new deals in front of Jake Carlisle and Jack Lonie.

They are also considering delisted Essendon forward Shaun McKernan as a foil for Max King and Tim Membrey.

St Kilda aren’t keen to spend big on another tall forward and McKernan, who booted 51 goals in 53 games for Essendon, would be a cheap depth option.

“It’s not an area of the ground that we’re going to throw a lot of assets and money and those sort of things at,” Gallagher said.

“That’s not to be disrespectful to anyone we may bring in.

“We think we’ve got our No.1 forward for a number of years but it’s an area we need some more support in I reckon.”





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Today host Allison Langdon disregards plight of hospitality workers


Today host Allison Langdon’s questions to a young union representative don’t reflect the often difficult nature of working in hospitality, writes Luc Devine.

LAST WEEK ON Today, host and suicide prevention ambassador for RUOK Allison Langdon interviewed Hospo Voice Union representative Laurence Sadler about the risks hospitality staff members face returning to work after the lockdown.

During the segment, Sadler listed the occupational hazards in a post-COVID-19 venue and how the known systemic issues of the industry compound the risk to his members.

Langdon was combative and failed to show empathy for the plight of hospitality staff, concluding the interview, stating:

“Maybe you should get a job in another industry then.”

Langdon’s primary workplace concern is co-host Karl Stefanovic, who is notorious for a published phone call criticising then co-host Georgie Gardner for “not having enough opinions” and suggesting that she “needs to step up her game if she wants to stay on the show”

At the end of 2018 Nine dumped Stefanovic in the wake of the scandal only to fire Gardner a year later so that Stefanovic could return in 2020, this time accompanied by Langdon who is not short on opinions. Gardner now presents Nine News on the weekend, suggesting that if Stefanovic did move to have Langdon fired, Nine would find her another gig.

It is unlikely that Langdon will ever have to sign up for the Jobkeeper or Jobseeker programs.

Australian hospitality staff aren’t so lucky. According to figures reported by the ABC, 594,300 Australians lost their jobs in April and that figure continues to rise. These casualties of COVID-19 will likely be unemployed until things bounce back.

However, as the economy has suffered such a seismic shock and a potential second wave of COVID-19 ahead, the outlook is bleak.

So why is Langdon being so hostile to Sadler, the representative of these “Aussie Battlers” on air? Because of ideology.

It’s not a secret that Channel 9 is a propaganda machine for the Liberal Government. Late last year, Nine CEO Hugh Marks hosted a corporate fundraiser for the Liberal party where attendees paid $10,000 a head to hobnob at the Channel 9 studio with none other than Prime Minister Scott Morrison himself.

Given this, it’s not surprising that Langdon slid into a bit of pro-Liberal “union bashing” during her interview.

If things were normal, Langon promoting a Liberal agenda like this would present as poor journalism, repugnant in its partisanship but to be expected given Nine’s form.

During a pandemic it puts people’s lives at risk. Indeed, hospitality staff are in one of the highest risk groups for COVID-19. Twelve McDonalds stores in Melbourne’s north have been closed down after a delivery driver infected two crew members at different stores.

Langdon responds to Sadler’s concerns about the safety of workers is to insist that people are “most [hospitality] workers are pretty desperate to return to their jobs.” This statement is especially perverse because it’s Sadler on screen speaking for the workers and Langdon is parroting a Liberal Party “talking point” to restart the economy at any cost.

Even if that cost is people’s lives.

Ending the lockdown period and urging businesses to resume operations as normal is a political calculation wherein Prime Minister Scott Morrison accepts that a certain number of Australians will die.

It’s not unimaginable that he’s using models that predict an approximate number of dead people which he has not released to the public.

When Langdon gets on TV and promotes the idea of workers returning to a demonstrably unsafe environment, she’s signalling an inherent Liberal Party belief that the working class are expendable. When she tells him to “get a job in another industry”, she’s relaying her contempt for someone she regards as beneath her. Someone poor.

I was raised in a working-class family. I was unable to complete my first degree due to ongoing violence at home. I applied for multiple hospitality jobs but only ever got the job if I knew an existing staff member.

Most of the hospitality jobs I worked in shared two common features: abusive management and exploitative workplace practices. Each time, this was my only option. People who do service are subject to a dual front of potential attack from management and customers. They are often berated, belittled and ridiculed by people who regard them as less than human.

Brodie Panlock suffered systematic bullying at the hands of her manager Nicholas Smallwood and co-worker Rhys McAlpine which drove her to commit suicide. At the inquest into her death, the coroner heard that Smallwood put fish oil in her bag, covered her with chocolate sauce and told she was worthless. She was spat on and told she was ugly. This bullying was protracted, and the business owner didn’t deem it appropriate to intervene on her behalf.

The reality is are very few institutional checks on the hospitality business to ensure the safety of workers.

Hospitality staff are rarely asked RUOK. The frantic pace combined with the incessant quest to extract maximum dollar value from your labour seldom permits a gap to have a conversation about your mental health. As Sadler said, “it’s quite a dodgy industry for workers”.

Even pre-pandemic hospitality staff were at a disadvantage. Just ask workers from Grill’d from whom millions of dollars were fraudulently stolen when they forced workers into a “traineeship” to avoid paying them the higher casual rate.

And who could forget “celebrity chef” George Columbaris, who stole $7.8 million dollars from workers by not paying overtime and proper penalty rates due to accidentally not installing the required processes to do so.

No employee happily submits to unfavourable circumstances. Hospitality staff do so because they need the work. That includes career professionals and casuals. If it were easy to get another job, they would have.

With limited opportunities to redeploy their skills, hospitality staff members will face challenges in the coming years including unemployment and potential homelessness which will be compounded by the mental health conditions that go along with those circumstances.

Many of them will be at risk of suicide. Langdon appears happy to condemn them to that fate. So, if you catch her in some future segment promoting suicide prevention on RUOK day, it’s valid to question whether or not she means it. Because that interview suggests Langdon is only concerned if some people ROK, if aligns with her agenda.

Luc Devine is a writer.

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