Former AFL Stars Matt de Boer and Andrew Ireland take on Commission Roles


Just over a month since hanging up his boots, former GWS and Fremantle midfielder Matt de Boer is preparing for a new role within the AFL Commission. Alongside him, Andrew Ireland, formerly of the Brisbane Lions and Sydney Swans administrations, has also been enlisted to bring their vast experience to the fore. The pair will step into their new roles as soon as the subsequent commission meeting in October.

The commission, in recent times, has been scouting for a seasoned player to occupy the vacant spot left by Jason Ball’s exit earlier this year. While several names popped up during the search, including Geelong captain Patrick Dangerfield and former Giants Captain Phil Davis, the nod went to de Boer. As well as boasting an illustrious playing career, the 33-year-old de Boer co-founded a venture capital firm in 2020.

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de Boer’s enthusiasm was apparent as he stated, “I am excited and also humbled by becoming a member of the commission. My passion and main objective is to bring the ups and downs of my 14-year AFL footy career to the table. Specifically, I hope to offer insight into my experience playing in multiple markets.”.

Chairman Richard Goyder echoed his approval of both appointments, expressing, “Both Andrew and Matt bring substantial experience and a unique understanding to their roles. They embody strong values and are passionate about the future growth of our game, making them great additions to our team on the commission.”.

Ireland, who made his mark in 110 games with Collingwood, went on to achieve remarkable success in administrative roles, holds a reputation for facilitating the game’s growth and embracing communities disconnected from AFL.

Humbled by his appointment, Ireland said, “The role of the commission is critical in guiding the code and providing oversight, and I am very honoured to join the team. My experience, I believe, will help the AFL to achieve its growth goals.”.

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