AFL 2021, Carlton, Matthew Kreuzer, coaching role, list of Carlton coaches, 2007 AFL Draft


Carlton’s 2007 No.1 draft pick Matthew Kreuzer will return to the club in an off-field coaching role.

The 31-year-old pulled a pin on his playing career during 2020 after a season-ending injury in the opening round of the year.

Kreuzer will be Carlton’s ruck coach for season 2021, working closely with talls Marc Pittonet and Tom De Koning.

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Blues appoint Kreuzer as AFL ruck coach


Matthew Kreuzer’s influence at Carlton will continue into the future after the much-loved figure’s appointment as the AFL club’s ruck coach.

Kreuzer played 189 games for the Blues over 13 seasons after being selected as the No.1 draft pick in 2007.

But he struggled with injuries throughout his career and was forced into retirement when a foot problem in round one ruined his 2020 campaign.

The 31-year-old will work closely with Marc Pittonet and emerging ruckman Tom De Koning in his new role.

“I loved my 13 years playing in the navy blue guernsey and to now have the chance to help the next generation come through is a great opportunity,” Kreuzer said.

“I want this club to have the ultimate success and to still be able to play a role in helping us achieve that is an opportunity I am looking forward to and can’t wait to get to work when pre-season begins.”

Carlton football boss Brad Lloyd welcomed the appointment.

“There are few people over the last decade who embody what it means to be a Carlton player and person more than Matthew,” Lloyd said.

“To have someone of his experience and knowledge, not just of the game but of our club, mentoring the next generation of Carlton ruckmen coming through, it is a perfect fit.

“A real focus for us is developing the players already on our list to ensure they get the most out of their ability, and with the development program we now have in place we feel we are well placed as a football club to achieve that.”

Carlton are hopeful of playing finals next year for the first time since 2013 after a big trade period that netted Adam Saad from Essendon and Greater Western Sydney’s Zac Williams.





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Matthew Kreuzer and Bryce Gibbs retire, foot injury, Carlton


AFL stars Matthew Kreuzer and Bryce Gibbs have announced their retirements on the same day.

Carlton ruckman Kreuzer, 31, has been dogged by a foot injury this year and has decided he won’t go around again in 2021.

Gibbs, also 31, moved to Adelaide at the end of 2017 after a decade at Carlton and told teammates today this season will be his last.

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The 2007 No. 1 draft pick, Kreuzer played all 189 of his AFL games for the Blues in a career that was, unfortunately, often hampered by injury.

He’s been out since Round 1 this season, when he fractured his foot in a loss to Richmond, and hasn’t recovered in time to make a farewell appearance.

Carlton recruited Gibbs with pick. No. 1 at the 2006 draft and the classy midfielder went on to play 231 games for the Blue Baggers before signing for the Crows.

His career has suffered since then as he fell out of favour at the South Australian club, struggling for regular game time.

Gibbs will play his final AFL game against his old club when the Crows play Carlton on Sunday.

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Brisbane Lions star Mitch Robinson was full of praise for Kreuzer when news of his retirement filtered through.

“Sad news to hear Kreuzer is retiring, such an injury plagued career but one of the most competitive tractors I’ve played with!” Robinson wrote on Twitter.

“Genuine bloke, big Humphrey congrats on an awesome career mate.”

Broadcaster and diehard Carlton fan Andy Maher added: “Tipping Matthew Kreuzer felt physically good in about 20 of his 189 games. But he kept coming back, kept fronting up and always made his team a better one. Whole hearted and honest, he gave what he had to give.”



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Former AFL number one draft picks, Matthew Kreuzer and Bryce Gibbs, announce retirements


Former Carlton teammates and the top picks in consecutive AFL drafts, Matthew Kreuzer and Bryce Gibbs, have both called time on their careers.

Blues ruckman Kreuzer, the 2007 number one draft pick, said he was mentally “cooked” after years of battling injuries and joked he “leaked” information about his retirement to avoid extra attention.

Adelaide announced Gibbs, who the Blues selected with the number one pick in the 2006 national draft, would play his final AFL match against his former club on Sunday.

“I gave it everything. Would’ve been nice to keep going but I’m cooked,” Kreuzer told Carlton teammates.

“The mind can’t do what the body wants to do anymore.

Between 2005 and 2007, Carlton had three consecutive number one selections — Marc Murphy, Gibbs and Kreuzer.

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Murphy, 33, has enjoyed a decorated career with the Blues and is set to play again in 2021.

The injury-plagued Kreuzer played 189 matches and booted 94 goals for the Blues over 13 seasons but has been absent since the season restart with a serious foot injury suffered in round one.

The 31-year-old had rejoined the Blues in their Queensland hub after previously returning to Victoria for treatment on his foot.

Despite retiring, he will remain in Queensland with the team until the Blues’ season ends.

Kreuzer was a popular player among Blues supporters due to his work rate and athleticism.

His best season came in 2017, when he finished third in Carlton’s best and fairest and was named in the 40-man All Australian squad.

Gibbs ‘forever grateful’

Gibbs is retiring a year before his Adelaide contract was due to finish in 2021.

“The Carlton Football Club gave me the opportunity to fulfil a boyhood dream and I cannot thank them enough,” Gibbs said.

“It was home for 11 years and the club shaped me into the person I am today, and I’ll be forever grateful for everything they have done for me.

“I have given my all in 14 seasons at the top level and I’m looking forward to playing against some of my lifelong friends one final time.”

Bryce Gibbs (centre) joined the Crows ahead of the 2018 season.(AAP: Julian Smith)

Gibbs played 231 matches and kicked 137 goals for the Blues, winning the John Nicholls Medal in 2014 and finishing top five in the Blues’ best and fairest in eight of 11 seasons at Carlton.

He unsuccessfully sought a trade to hometown club Adelaide at the end of 2016, before ultimately joining the Crows at the conclusion of the following season.

Gibbs played all 22 matches in 2018 and was fourth in Adelaide’s club champion awards but fell out of favour to play just 12 matches in 2019 and two this year.

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‘Cooked’ Kreuzer calls it quits from Blues


Carlton ruckman Matthew Kreuzer has called time on his AFL career, with the 2007 No.1 draft pick mentally “cooked” after years of battling injuries.

The 31-year-old’s announcement comes on the same day his former teammate, the Blues’ 2006 No.1 draft pick, Bryce Gibbs also called it quits.

Adelaide announced Gibbs would play his final AFL game against his former club on Sunday, while the low-key Kreuzer says he “leaked” his retirement information to avoid extra attention.

“I gave it everything. Would’ve been nice to keep going but I’m cooked,” Kreuzer told Carlton teammates.

“The mind can’t do what the body wants to do anymore. It would’ve been good to stick around because I really believe we’re going somewhere.”

Between 2005 and 2007, Carlton had three consecutive No.1 selections – Marc Murphy, Gibbs and Kreuzer.

While Murphy is expected to play on next year with the Blues, Gibbs and Kreuzer will finish up after 14 and 13 years respectively.

Gibbs is retiring a year before his Adelaide contract was due to finish in 2021.

“The Carlton Football Club gave me the opportunity to fulfil a boyhood dream and I cannot thank them enough,” Gibbs said.

“It was home for 11 years and the club shaped me into the person I am today, and I’ll be forever grateful for everything they have done for me.

“I have given my all in 14 seasons at the top level and I’m looking forward to playing against some of my lifelong friends one final time.”

Gibbs played 231 games and kicked 137 goals for the Blues, winning the John Nicholls Medal in 2014 and finishing top five in the Blues’ best and fairest in eight of 11 seasons at Carlton.

He unsuccessfully sought a trade to hometown club Adelaide at the end of 2016, before ultimately joining the Crows at the conclusion of the following season.

Gibbs played all 22 games in 2018 and was fourth in Adelaide’s club champion awards but fell out of favour to play just 12 games in 2019 and two this year.

The injury-plagued Kreuzer played 189 games and booted 94 goals for the Blues over 13 seasons but has been absent since the season restart with a serious foot injury suffered in round one.

The 31-year-old had rejoined the Blues in their Queensland hub after previously returning to Victoria for treatment on his foot.

With youngster Tom De Koning emerging this year and former Hawk Marc Pittonet proving an inspired recruit, the Blues have found ruck depth in Kreuzer’s absence.

Despite retiring, he will remain in Queensland with the team until the Blues’ season ends.

Kreuzer was Carlton’s prized No.1 pick in the 2007 draft, taken as a priority selection ahead of close friend and future Richmond captain Trent Cotchin.

Despite dealing with injuries throughout his career, Kreuzer was a popular player among Blues supporters due to his work rate and athleticism.

His best season came in 2017, when he finished third in Carlton’s best and fairest and was named in the 40-man All Australian squad.





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Matthew Kreuzer and Bryce Gibbs gave their all during Carlton’s darkest days


Carlton may have the equal most VFL/AFL premierships to their name, but a generation of fans have grown up knowing nothing but struggles.

The Blues spent the vast majority of the 2000s as a basket case, with the mistakes of the previous era leaving the team in a dark hole.

That pit led to years on the bottom of the ladder and ended in three successive number one draft picks between 2005 and 2007: Marc Murphy, Bryce Gibbs and Matthew Kreuzer.

Today, Gibbs and Kreuzer announced their retirements. The former’s career has deteriorated since joining Adelaide, while the latter’s injury issues finally became too much to overcome.

Murphy is expected to go around again in 2021 and has earned that right, finishing this season in good form.

None of them wound up being the best player in their respective draft class. Collingwood captain Scott Pendlebury was taken after Murphy, Geelong captain Joel Selwood shared the top 10 with Gibbs and Richmond captain Trent Cotchin went next after Kreuzer.

Despite that, the trio carried the hopes of a generation of Carlton fans and at their best, were all excellent players in their own right.

Gibbs started as a skinny half-back flanker and developed into a versatile weapon, capable of playing as a classy on-baller, on the wing, across half-forward or even as a tagger. Gibbs was often criticised, but lockdown roles on the likes of Adam Goodes and Brendon Goddard when at their respective peaks proved his discipline.

Kreuzer played 189 total games and missed close to 100 more with injury. At his best, he was as good as any ruckman in the competition at winning the ball at ground level and used his size and strength around the ground to insert his influence.

Everything came together for the ruckman in 2017, making the All-Australian squad and finishing third in Carlton’s best and fairest.

In fact, 2017 was the last year the trio were together in navy blue. Murphy won the John Nicholls Medal, while Gibbs won the eternal respect of all Carlton fans in his own way.

He finished fourth in the best and fairest and had arguably a career year, despite wishing to join Adelaide in the previous season’s trade period and his eventual move there feeling inevitable.

Gibbs left Princes Park as expected, but no Carlton person could say he didn’t give them his all. The midfielder finished in the top five of the club’s best and fairest in eight of his 11 seasons.

Ultimately, that will be the legacy of both Gibbs and Kreuzer. Carlton players who entered the club at its rock bottom and gave their all to leave it in a better place.








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Former Carlton teammates Matthew Kreuzer, Bryce Gibbs announce AFL retirement


Carlton ruckman Matthew Kreuzer has retired from football, effective immediately, while his former teammate, Adelaide’s Bryce Gibbs, will play a farewell game against his old club after telling teammates on Thursday morning he had decided to retire.

Kreuzer, 31, was out of contract at the end of 2020 while Gibbs, who had one year to serve on a four-year deal with the Crows, has settled with the club to finish up this season.

Former teammates Bryce Gibbs and Matthew Kreuzer have announced their AFL retirements.Credit:Pat Scala

The 2007 No.1 draft pick fractured his foot in round one, his only game this season which brought his career total to 189 matches, while Gibbs has battled to win a spot in the Crows’ team under new coach Matthew Nicks.

Kreuzer played 56 consecutive games from his debut but ruptured his ACL mid-way through 2010.



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