Currently in the AFL, we are witnessing a significant change, a change in the classical players that have had all of us footy enthusiasts/spectators stranded on our couches and glued to our television screens. The great players of the last 10-15 AFL seasons are unfortunately becoming seasoned in age and gained wisdom as they are passing on the torch to young guns who have risen.
It is an exciting time for football as we are weathering a transitional phase, we are getting a small taste and preview into what our great game could look like in the future. The past couple of seasons have seen the empathic entrances and births of exciting young talents; for example, Matt Rowell, Max King, Zak Butters, Sam Walsh and Bailey Smith, to name a few.
The past 10-15 seasons has seen the AFL be dominated by some of the greatest players to step on a football field such as Gary Ablett Jnr, Lance Franklin, Patrick Dangerfield, Scott Pendlebury, Dustin Martin and Nat Fyfe. Players such as Ablett Jnr have hung up their boots, but the other great veterans mentioned are entering the twilight periods of their illustrious careers. These players are still considered the peak level that are currently existing in the game as they are still inputting great influence for their teams. However, they are playing the roles of veterans as they are taking a back seat, guiding the kids and letting them lead the way.
Many clubs in the AFL are beginning transitional phases in their squad developments and some clubs are extremely benefiting but others are yet to reap rewards. Port Adelaide are a prime example of a current top performing club who are embracing the power of youth.They posses’ great young talents such as Zak Butters, Conor Rozee and Xavier Duursma as they are fielding 12 players between the ages of 18-21. Port Adelaide are certainly one of the favourites to conquer the flag and their embracement of young talents, nursed by star veterans such as Travis Boak and Robbie Gray is benefitting the club in the present and will continue to benefit them in the future.