It’s been a bad week for the AFL, with grotesque allegations of mistreatment of First Nations players at Hawthorn marring what should be a celebration of the best the game has to offer.
So it must have been a relief for chief executive Gillon McLachlan and other big wigs to distract from the issue for a media opportunity with some of the entertainers who will rock the grand final at the MCG on Saturday.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: A high-heeled Delta Goodrem shows off an amazing footy skill at the press conference.
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But was there a hidden message in amongst all the fanfare?
UK hitmaker Robbie Williams was among the performers to join McLachlan at the ground on Thursday to promote the line-up, which also includes Delta Goodrem, G-Flip, Katie Noonan, Ngairre, Goanna, Tasman Keith, The Temper Trap and Mike Brady.
Headliner Williams, a bona fide devil-may-care popstar who hails from the West Midlands, sported a mullet-mohawk hairdo and sequin-leather combination jacket with a red and black diamond pattern.
Then, among the rest of the bling, there was the silver bracelet emblazoned with the words “f*** off”.
“I do know a little bit about footy,” Williams told reporters.
“I have not picked a team fully for who I’m going to support on the regular and I’m not picking a team before the final .. and I don’t want the other half (of the crowd) to boo me while I’m singing.
“Honoured to be part of the occasion.”
AFL GRAND FINAL TIMETABLE
1.25pm – Welcome to Country by Uncle Colin Hunter Jnr.
1.26pm – Grand Final Motorcade in Toyota HiLux vehicles
1.33pm – Mike Brady
1.40pm – Telstra Pre Match Entertainment – Robbie Williams with Delta Goodrem
2.11pm – Umpire entry and Toyota match ball delivery
2.13pm – 2.16pm -Teams enter
2.24pm – MC Hamish McLachlan – Acknowledgement of Country
2.25pm – Delivery of the 2022 Premiership Cup by Bachar Houli, Premiership Cup Ambassador
2.26pm – National anthem performed by Katie Noonan
2.28pm – Coin Toss
2.30pm – 2022 Toyota AFL Grand Final starts
Telstra Half Time Entertainment – Australian musicians’ line-up G Flip, The Temper Trap featuring Budjerah and Ngaiire, Goanna with Shane Howard, Christine Anu, Emma Donovan, Tasman Keith and William Barton and The Australian Girls Choir.
Final siren, followed by the presentation of the umpires’ medals (to be presented by John Sutcliffe), Norm Smith Medal (to be presented by Nathan Buckley), Jock McHale (to be presented by John Nicholls) Medal, premiership medallions (to be presented by NAB AFL Auskick participants), the Premiership Cup (to be presented by a past club great).
Note: all times are Australian Eastern Standard Time