Adam Kingsley looks on before Greater Western Sydney's clash against Carlton in round six, 2024. Picture: Getty Images

GREATER Western Sydney coach Adam Kingsley has passionately called for perspective be applied in the ongoing debate over Academy draft picks as he staunchly defended the value of the Giants' program.

Following Gold Coast's remarkable first-round haul via their Academy in last year's Telstra AFL Draft, calls have been ongoing for clubs to pay a higher price for top draft picks from their academies.

As reported on Tuesday, clubs and the League met with a revamp of the bidding system being considered, which could see all father-son, northern Academy and Next Generation Academy players fall into the same draft process.

Kingsley has echoed the sentiments of his CEO at the Giants in Dave Matthews, who said that the complaints from the Victorian clubs around Academy selections in non-AFL heartland states smacks of naivety.

And he is adamant that their junior programs are essential for the growth of the game nationally, not just to serve the clubs that they're aligned to.

"The debate around it is a little misguided. I've sat in that chair in Melbourne and you need to come up here and understand there's no-one in western Sydney who plays our game. It's two and a half million people and that's the last area within Australia that is a significant growth opportunity. We need to invest in that area and we need to invest more than we currently do. It's not just the Giants and the Swans, it's the AFL," Kingsley said.


"The role of the Academy is to grow the sport, where it's not seen as a competitor (in western Sydney) to other sports like rugby league or soccer and I just think it's absolutely imperative that we invest in this.

"The more kids in western Sydney that are playing this game the more opportunities we have to pick those guys but so do the other clubs because ultimately, we have to match those bids and pay a fair price to get them.

"The more western Sydney kids that we take or Gold Coast take in their Academy the more Victorian kids there are to stay and play for them. We need to broaden our vision on what's really important and then do our best to maximise that growth and participation."

Adam Kingsley looks on during Greater Western Sydney's clash against Carlton in round six, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

The Giants coach backed up his calls for their Academy to protected with the point that his 12-year-old club doesn't have the father-son opportunities that the long-established clubs do.

"We don't have access to father-sons. There'll be a couple that go at the end of this year (the Camporeale twins to Carlton) and there's been some premiership ones recently, more than a couple, a few, and we don't have that luxury," Kingsley said.

"I think it's a great system, the father-son, but we don't have that opportunity yet and so the Academy is similar in a sense but the role is to grow the game in a region."