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Former Collingwood president Eddie McGuire ‘sad for everybody’ after Heritier Lumumba releases Nathan Buckley recordings

McGuire revealed that he’d not spoken with the 35-year-old in “probably five or six years” but insisted that he’d be welcomed back to Collingwood with open arms, should he want to return one day.

“No one’s ever been at war with this. No one’s been trying to prove that they’re not this or not that,” he said.

“We want the place to be a happy place. I’d love nothing more than if Heritier was able to come back some time so that we could all look back on the 2010 premiership, the years of fun that everyone had together.

“I’ve seen a lot of people in football clubs who have been embittered for whatever reason, right or wrong, and have then gone (back to clubs).

“If Heritier wants to turn up, he might think there’s people that want to hate him, there’s not.”

Despite the mistakes that have been made in the past at Collingwood, McGuire is confident that progress has been made in the cultural space.

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“I think the club are doing great things now,” he said.

“The Do Better report was commissioned by me and our board. It got leaked but it was going to be presented. The only reason why it wasn’t presented was because there were factual errors in there that we wanted to have right so that nobody could come back at it. So there was no hiding it or anything else like that.

“The club lent into this and largely because we wanted to find out what was going on… whether it was completely right from Heritier or partly right, we actually lent into this in a big way.

“We have put in place everything that the experts have asked. Jeff Browne’s board now has gone out and got experts from RMIT and everywhere else to drive this.

“The Collingwood Football Club, I’d argue, has now got the systems right – that’s the systemic part. It wasn’t that we were doing anything different to anybody else, we just didn’t have them like no one else.”

This story was originally published on Wide World of Sports.

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