Jets' door is open for Dan
IPSWICH Jets chairman Steve Johnson says the club’s former captain Dan Coburn will be welcomed back with open arms despite his bagging of the Jets last week.
But Johnson also said Coburn could have tarnished his legacy at the Jets by reacting so negatively to being offered a reduced contract.
Last week, a gutted Coburn said the 256 games he played for his beloved Ipswich Jets were stained after he was forced out of the club with what he described as an “insulting” contract offer.
Coburn left the Jets after rejecting a contract that he said was not near what he had been paid previously or what he needed to provide for his family.
He will play alongside good friend and another former Jets mainstay Michael Ryan at Brothers in the IRL next year.
Johnson said reading the comments from Coburn hurt him greatly, but he still had great respect for the rugged lock who became synonymous with the green Jets jersey.
“I think Danny is a great guy. I love the guy dearly and I always will but what he said about how the club treated him hurt me,” Johnson said.
“We did talk to him about the offer and why it was reduced so I don’t know why he said we didn’t.
“I think he may have tarnished his own legacy at the club by saying what he did and I just hope he is remembered for the great service he gave to the Jets.”
Johnson said the Jets’ door was always open for Coburn and he would be welcomed into a mentoring or coaching role in the future.
“I would welcome him back here any time. I’m disappointed about what he said about the club but I have known Danny for a long time and I still have great respect for him,” Johnson said.
Johnson’s retort came after Coburn told The Queensland Times last week that he was disappointed he would never wear the green jersey again.
“I feel like I’ve lost a member of my family,” Coburn said.
“It’s like a part of me died.
“They didn’t talk to me about it really they just said this is the offer take it or leave it and I thought considering what I’ve put into the club I deserved better treatment.”
Coburn holds the record for most game played for the Jets with 256.
He played his 250th game earlier this year, and the Jets presented Coburn with an oil painting to commemorate the achievement.
But now Coburn will don the blue and white of Brothers in the Ipswich Rugby League competition as captain. He will also have a coaching role.
Jets chief executive Brad Wolens said he wished he had known Coburn wanted to take on a coaching role.
“We have a couple of coaching roles at the Jets open at the moment and if I had known that, we would have considered him,” Wolens said.
“He could end up a good coach and who knows, maybe one day he will be back at the club in a coaching role.”