AFL's Brown joins arch-rivals Carlton - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

AFL's Brown joins arch-rivals Carlton

08/10/2010 06:41:54 PM Comments (0)

Revered Collingwood figure Gavin Brown will do the unthinkable and join arch-rivals Carlton as he pursues his ambition of becoming a senior AFL coach.

Less than a week after helping the Magpies win their 15th premiership, Brown has announced he will work as an assistant coach under Brett Ratten.

The defection has the blessing of the Collingwood hierarchy, and Magpies football manager Geoff Walsh called on the Magpie army to support Brown's move.

"I hope that all Collingwood supporters back Gavin's decision, as the club has, and allow him to broaden his football experience in being part of a different club environment, which he believes will help him develop into a senior AFL coach," Walsh said.

Brown has spent his entire AFL career at the Magpies as a player and assistant coach.

He captained the `Pies for five years in his 254-game career, won three club best and fairest awards, was a member of their drought-breaking 1990 premiership side and was named on the bench in the Collingwood team of the century.

After he retired in 2000, Brown became an assistant under Mick Malthouse and was in charge of their VFL side for the last three years.

Brown, 43, admitted the decision to leave his football home was tough, saying he is "eternally grateful" to the Magpies.

"Collingwood has been such a huge part of my life and has given me such amazing opportunities, (they have) really shaped and moulded the person I am," he said.

"The decision to leave has been made a lot easier given the fact we have won the premiership this year - I feel a sense of accomplishment in the role I played in this achievement.

"Leaving has been the biggest decision I've had to make in my life and I've done so with mixed emotions.

"It would be an easy decision to stay, but I feel the time is right to further my coaching career and I thank Carlton for the opportunity they're giving me."

Brown is the second prominent deputy coach to join the Blues this week, following Alan Richardson's move from Essendon to become their senior assistant.

In their media statement announcing Brown's move, the Blues called Brown "one of the most respected people in football".

"His experience as a player and assistant coach in the AFL and also as a senior coach in the VFL will provide our coaching team with tremendous experience and knowledge," Blues football manager Stephen Icke said.

"We ... believe it is a real coup for this club.

"He was a part of the 2010 premiership club and has been at Collingwood all his AFL career, so the fact he has made the decision to join Carlton is an endorsement of where (we are) heading."

Brown's move also comes a day after the Magpies confirmed 200-game ruckman Josh Fraser would also leave.

Fraser will continue playing with expansion team Gold Coast.

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