New Essendon boss Lindsay Tanner says he wants James Hird back

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Lindsay Tanner has spent his first day as Essendon's new chairman talking about James Hird.

While Hird's replacement, John Worsfold, prepares the Bombers for their first season under his guidance, Tanner put the ousted coach back on the agenda by using his first speech to say he wants Hird back at the club.

He reinforced that point in an a sometimes terse interview with Tony Jones on 3AW Mornings.

Tanner: Formal or informal ... I think it's important he's part of the family and not off to the side.

TJ: He's off to the side because you sacked him.

Tanner: He departed by mutual agreement.

TJ: Well, you sacked him.

Tanner: Well, I was there - you weren't.

TJ: I was at the press conference, it certainly looked like a sacking.

Tanner: I repeat my comment.

Click play to hear the interview

3AW Breakfast's Jon Anderson backed Tanner's defence of Jobe Watson, but remains concerned for the Essendon skipper's Brownlow medal.

Tanner also used his speech last night to assert Watson should keep his 2012 Brownlow medal regardless of whether he is found guilty of doping.

"I thinks it's good leadership (from Tanner) to be on the front foot straight away," Ando told Justin and Kate this morning.

"It's a really uncomfortable situation ... I hope (Watson) keeps (the medal) personally.

"If Jobe wants to be captain he should be captain ... but the Brownlow is a different matter."

Click play to hear Ando's full take

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