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Collingwood shake up continues with general manager of football Geoff Walsh announcing retirement

Collingwood’s tough 2020 has continued with club president Eddie McGuire’s right-hand man today announcing his retirement.

Footy boss Geoff Walsh, who has spent almost four decades working in the AFL, said he made his decision late last week to walk away from the embattled club.

Geoff Walsh with club president Eddie McGuire.
Camera IconGeoff Walsh with club president Eddie McGuire. Credit: Michael Willson/AFL Media

“I have been contemplating this for some time and as one of my old coaches once put it, the moment you start thinking about retirement is the time to finish,” Walsh said.

“I am ready and the time for Collingwood is also right. I will thank personally the many people I need to but I would like to acknowledge the game for the rich experiences, friendships and professional rewards I have been lucky enough to enjoy.

“It was a privilege to serve the game.”

Walsh has served at the Pies for more than a decade, between 2006 and 2013 and again between 2017 and 2020.

“Geoff has been one of the all-time great administrators and football people,” McGuire said.

“He moved with and shaped the game as it evolved from a semi-professional, state-based sport into a professional and national competition. He knows and understands the game like few others do.

“He was with Collingwood for over a decade. We would have liked to have had him with us for another decade.”

Geoff Walsh with Collingwood coach Michael Malthouse and assistant Brad Scott in 2009.
Camera IconGeoff Walsh with Collingwood coach Michael Malthouse and assistant Brad Scott in 2009. Credit: Michael Willson/The Slattery Media Group

Walsh’s career includes stints at Fitzroy, Carlton and North Melbourne in a variety of administration roles before he joined the Pies in late 2016.

During his career, Walsh has shared in four premierships, 10 grand finals and 25 finals series and was awarded AFL Life Membership in 2016.

Magpie announces shock retirement

Collingwood defender Tom Langdon has announced his retirement from the AFL at age 26.

Langdon, who is contracted for 2021, has struggled with an ongoing chronic knee injury and spoke previously of his “tough” bid to return to the AFL.

Langdon was best afield for Collingwood in the 2018 Grand Final loss to West Coast.

“Tom played some wonderful football for Collingwood and it was a sad day when the reality of his premature retirement arrived,” outgoing footy boss Geoff Walsh said.

Tom Langdon has retired at just 26.
Camera IconTom Langdon has retired at just 26. Credit: Michael Willson/AFL Photos

“We saw him work incredibly hard to get back. He pushed himself through so much pain to keep his hopes of a comeback flickering. Given his talent and application, his finish is a cruel football story.”

He played 89 games in six seasons at Collingwood, after being snapped up with 65 in the 2013 AFL Draft.

Langdon joins teammate Dayne Beams in announcing an early AFL retirement.

The Pies also delisted Rupert Wills and Flynn Appleby, leaving them with just 34 contracted players for 2021 — the least of any AFL team heading into the upcoming draft.

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