Western Bulldogs re-sign Akermanis - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Western Bulldogs re-sign Akermanis

11/11/2009 08:46:04 PM Comments (0)

The lure of a fourth AFL premiership has proved irresistible for Jason Akermanis, who has signed a one-year deal with the Western Bulldogs.

There will be much expectation next year about the Bulldogs, who lost to St Kilda by only seven points in their preliminary final and then beefed up their attack by signing Barry Hall.

Akermanis' decision to accept a pay cut and play another year followed months of speculation about his AFL future.

The 32-year-old has played 316 senior games, including 68 since joining the `Dogs three years ago.

Akermanis won the 2001 Brownlow Medal at Brisbane and also played in the Lions' 2001-03 premiership teams.

He said in a club statement that he wants to help the Bulldogs take "the next step".

"I am just excited to go again for another 12 months, it's a real bonus," Akermanis said.

"You are retired for a long time and I still feel I can play a valuable role for the team up forward and at times on the ball.

"Football has never been about the money, it has been about the thrill and enjoyment of winning, that is the most important thing for me.

"I believe that this team has a lot of success in front of it and despite the fact that it is such a hard game, I still have the passion to play AFL."

Akermanis remains a dangerous player in attack or on the ball and kicked 43 goals in 24 games this season.

Bulldogs football manager James Fantasia said Akermanis' decision to keep playing was a major boost.

"He has a wealth of experience and still has the ability to turn a game off his own boot," Fantasia said.

"Jason has also developed into a fantastic mentor for our young players.

"It has been widely reported that we could not offer Jason the type of money that a player of his quality commands and for him to still commit to the club is testament to the belief this group has in its ability."

There is also speculation that the `Dogs are close to signing veteran midfielder Nathan Eagleton.

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