Victorian footy fans will once again be watching the AFL Grand Final from home, and this “patronising” message certainly didn’t help.
The Victorian Department of Health is copping heavy backlash after posting a “condescending” and “patronising” message to footy supporters on social media ahead of the AFL Grand Final between Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs.
For a second consecutive year, the MCG will not host the sport’s pinnacle event due to Covid-19 restrictions.
The AFL Grand Final will instead be played at Perth’s Optus Stadium in a twilight timeslot for the first time in the competition’s history.
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Victoria recorded 847 new local cases on Saturday, the highest number of daily infections for the state since the pandemic began, beating last year’s peak of 725.
Speaking to reporters on Saturday, Jeroen Weimar admitted he was “extremely worried” about the implications if Victorians breach measures to celebrate the AFL Grand Final.
The Covid-19 commander warned Victorians if they go rogue, it could set the state back when they’re so close to freedom.
“I’m extremely worried that large numbers of Victorians will say tonight, ‘Well, just for tonight we’ll all get together and have a good night out and we’ll take our masks off and we’ll scream and we’ll shout and we’ll have a good drink’,” Weimar said.
“And as a result of that, in six, seven days down the road, we’ve got another big cluster of cases, and another big step up in our infection numbers.”
In an attempt to promote Covid-safe behaviour, the official Victorian Department of Health Twitter account posted on Friday: “Whether you barrack for the Dees or the Dogs we can all kick a goal this AFL Grand Final by getting the COVID-19 vaccine and staying COVIDSafe to protect ourselves, our loved ones and our community. Remember to follow the current restrictions in your area and leave home only for permitted reasons.”
The tweet was accompanied by a graphic titled “Celebrating the AFL Grand Final”, which featured a collection of checkpoints for Victorian footy fans:
– Celebrate with your household
– Call a mate to heckle them
– Don your club colours
– Belt out your team’s anthem
– Whip up your fave snacks
– Go all-out on home decorations
As expected, it didn’t go down very well with Victorians.
Australian Olympian Tamsyn Manou wrote: “Who writes this stuff! So out of touch … heckle a mate and whip up snacks. Our GF is in Perth. It sux. No snacks or heckling or donning of colours can change that cr***y feeling that the MCG will be empty tomorrow.”
Former Boomers coach Brendan Joyce posted: “I expect our good taxpayers $ paying for this rubbish too! Arrogance & patronising.”
Sports reporter Bernie Coen tweeted: “Is that serious? Whoever gave that the go ahead in Vic Gov should be embarrassed … not to mention a waste of money coming up with that condescending rubbish.”
Channel 10 journalist Stephen Quartermain called it: “Condescending c**p which has been dished out ad nauseam.”
Western Australia was hit by another Covid-19 scare this week, but thankfully it will have no impact on the AFL Grand Final.
On Friday, authorities revealed a woman tested positive after flying into Perth from NSW without a valid travel pass this week.
WA Premier Mark McGowan said fellow passengers on the woman’s flight were in quarantine and there was no expectation Saturday’s footy decider would be affected.
The first bounce of the AFL Grand Final is scheduled for 7.15pm AEST.
With Natalie Brown and Andrew McMurtry