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League to look into Malthouse's claims of Crows poaching Betts

Mick interview sparks more speculation Hear from Mick Malthouse, analysis from Nick Bowen
Eddie Betts' departure was upsetting to many - ${keywords}
Eddie Betts' departure was upsetting to many

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THE AFL will "make an inquiry" about Mick Malthouse's claims that Eddie Betts had an agreement with Adelaide 18 months before he left Carlton.

Under AFL rules, players cannot sign with a rival club while under contract and the League will look into the sacked Blues coach's allegation.

"We would make an inquiry to see if we need to do anything that would require us to investigate further," an AFL spokesman told AFL.com.au.

Betts was a restricted free agent when he accepted an offer from the Crows during the October 2013 player movement period.

But in an explosive radio interview on Tuesday, Malthouse claimed Carlton CEO Steven Trigg – who was the Crows boss in 2013 – had told him Betts was "stitched up" long before he officially moved to Adelaide.

"I'd still love to have a number of players here. Betts is the most classical one, because he's a goalkicker," Matlhouse told SEN.

"But Steven Trigg assured us when he arrived here 'Don't take it too personally, we – being Adelaide – had him stitched up 18 months out’.

"So it's very, very difficult when you come to a football club and a bloke like that plays very cautious football because his heart and soul, certainly his mind, was everywhere else.

"He tried to do the right thing, but when you've got that load of 'Will I go, won't I go, but I've already signed' … so we lose that sort of player."

But Malthouse's claim Betts had an agreement with the Crows while under contract has been refuted by Betts’ manager Ned Guy.

“It is 100 per cent not true. I am not sure where the confusion lies but I am pretty sure Steven Trigg wouldn’t have said that to Mick,” Guy told News Corp.

 

“It just didn’t happen. He didn’t agree to it until after the season finished. I find it pretty disappointing that he would question Eddie’s intent on the footy, saying he played cautiously.

“By his own admission he didn’t have the greatest year but that was pretty disappointing to hear that from Mick.

“He broke his jaw in round one, came back and played three games and broke (St Kilda player) Nathan Wright’s jaw, which he was really regretful about, and so he missed more footy.

“He had no continuity in his footy in the first half of the year but he kicked five goals in the two finals they played.”

Betts' goalkicking output was down in 2013, with the small forward booting 27.15 from 18 games.

In 2012 he kicked 48.30 in 22 games and last year – his first season at Adelaide – the 28-year-old snagged 51.22 in a full season.

This year he is second in the Coleman Medal race with 29 majors, only two behind West Coast full-forward Josh Kennedy.