Yarraville Seddon Eagles have pulled off a recruiting coup signing former AFL player Michael Barlow as its playing coach for next year’s Western Region Football League division 1 season.
The Eagles announced that Barlow would not only coach the men’s side, but would also be the club’s director of coaching.
Barlow, who played 141 AFL games during his time at Freemantle and then Gold Coast, has been at Werribee in the VFL since 2019 as a playing assistant coach.
Eagles president Rick Halliwell said the signing was significant for the whole club.
“It was a bit of a process, but we were looking for a high profile coach and we looked pretty hard,” he said.
“We couldn’t have asked for someone better. He’ll be coaching the whole club and the junior focus was one of the main reasons that he applied.
“He’s the right person and he fits everything that we were after.”
Halliwell said the response to Barlow’s appointment had been huge and they were expecting to announce the rest of the coaching panel and some new signings in the next couple of weeks.
He said they weren’t expecting to lose any of the existing playing group, which had been a big focus.
“It’s been about trying to get some enjoyment and try and build up football,” he said.
“Hopefully we can start pre-season early and get football back on the mind.”
Barlow replaces Chris Atkins who stood down from the role for personal reasons.
Speaking on social media, Barlow said he was very excited and honoured to take on not only the men’s coaching role, but helping out across the whole club.
“2020 has been a bit all over the shop and nothing has gone our way, nothing’s gone anyone’s way, so we’ll get a good head start on what 2021 looks like.
“Looking forward to meeting a lot of people over the next few months to get ready for the season.
“I’m ready to go and I’m very excited by the opportunity.”