By Sam Watson

LAST Thursday, AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan released a video thanking all involved in community football, while also announcing a multi-million-dollar funding package that will flow into community football in 2022.

Before announcing the funding package, which was recently signed off by the AFL commission, McLachlan thanked all community players, coaches, volunteers, and supporters across the country.

“I just want to say thank you for doing what you do for our game, and just reach out and hope you’re going okay,” McLachlan said.

He acknowledged clubs in Victoria and NSW were doing it much tougher than other states and he said the AFL understood how hard it had been for clubs over the last 18 months.

“I really am absolutely aware of how important community football is to the elite, they work hand in glove.

“We will be there for you whatever circumstance, whatever club, situation you’re in, whatever state you’re in.”

McLachlan then backed up that statement by announcing the AFL would be creating a funding package for community footy worth more than $10 million.

“It is a clear priority for us, and it’s the biggest investment that we are going to make coming out of this year and into the next… it’s going to be into community football.

“I look forward to supporting you through whatever your circumstances are, thank you for everything you’ve done.”

Local clubs have been crying out for more help from the AFL for years, so it will be interesting to see the impact the money can have.