Steve Price and Peter Helliar have gone toe-to-toe on The Project, as Price was forced to defend his controversial opinion on the “substandard” AFLW.

Price, whose opinion piece was published in the Herald Sun on Friday, slammed the women’s AFL competition for being lacklustre compared to the men’s competition, and was “not deserving of the attention and funding it gets.”

Carrie Bickmore broached the article with Price, saying, “Let’s talk about your article on the AFLW last week that got a few people worked up.”

“You knew exactly what you were doing and executed it perfectly.”

As Steve began to defend his views, he went on to say women’s AFL games are drawing in minimal crowds, and games are resulting in very few points scored.

He doubled down by saying the ambition of the AFL to expand the women’s teams so rapidly was misguided, saying there was “not enough talent”.

Helliar quickly interjected and defended young sportswomen, saying the AFLW is only in its infancy and will continue to get better.

He said, “I think of my sisters who are footy mad and they would have loved to have dreamt the opportunity – the opportunity to have dreamed to play AFLW.”

‘This is better than it was four years ago, it will continue to get better.”

Price responded, “Let me clear up what I am saying simply. I think the AFL went too early and too hard. There is not enough talent to fill 18 teams.”

“They should have gone more quietly and you wouldn’t have the issues you are having at the moment. The media exposure is extraordinary for something that is not very good.”

Helliar then asked whether the Price simply didn’t like women playing physical sport, before Price defended his take by listing other sports he enjoyed watching women play.

Price cut the debate short by shutting down Helliar, saying, “I don’t think you understand writing a column is about an opinion that you have and that is my opinion. I don’t mind that you don’t agree with it.”

Image credits: The Project

This article first appeared on OverSixty.