A local Bombers fan has spectacularly accused the AFL of running a detailed anti-Essendon conspiracy that is attempting to bring down the once-great football club. Gerald McManus claims that there are “hundreds” of examples of foul play against the Bombers, and believes that all of it is being orchestrated from head office.

Speaking exclusively to The Watsonia Bugle, McManus said, “At first I didn’t believe it either, but once I started doing a bit of research it all started to unravel in front of my very eyes. The stuff that’s happened this year is really just the straw that broke the camel’s back, and as big as that whole supplements scandal thing was, that’s still only the tip of the iceberg.”

McManus says that he started to look into the alleged conspiracy after some peculiar late umpiring decisions in last Saturday night’s game against Fremantle. He said, “This year’s been a joke, mate. First it was Anzac Day, then Rampe climbs a bloody post a fortnight ago, and then last weekend the umps almost ripped us off against the Dockers. I thought to meself: something is up here, and I need to get to the bottom of it.”

After spending much of the last three days looking into the AFL’s treatment of his beloved Bombers, McManus believes he has been able to trace the exact source of the supposed conspiracy. He said, “I looked into it, and it all goes back to when Adam McPhee didn’t get picked for the All-Australian team way back in 2005. Sure, he only played 14 games that season, be he was mint in every one of those games. As a reigning All-Australian that year, he should’ve just walked straight back into the national team. His exclusion was outrageous. In hindsight, I should’ve known right then that the AFL had it in for us.”