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Draft prospect “learnt a lot” from Essendon VFL experience


Draft prospect Josh Goater says he greatly benefited from the experience of training with Essendon’s VFL side this season.

Goater spent four weeks training with the Bombers during the NAB League break and played a game against the Frankston Dolphins in May, kicking a goal in the 15-point win.

The 190cm versatile midfielder is a product out of the Calder Cannons and has been touted as a potential top 20 pick in this year’s National Draft.

“There was a break in the NAB League where we went back to local or a VFL program,” Goater told Sportsday.

“I was lucky enough to go down to Essendon VFL and train with them for about four weeks. I trained Monday and Wednesday every week for that four-week period and then was lucky enough to play a game with them, it was against the Dolphins.

“It was a really good experience to run out with those boys, there was a couple of AFL listed boys that were in there. I learnt a lot from that experience.

“Cody Brand, a fellow Sunbury Lions player, played in that game with me, so it was a good thing to share the ground with him.

“I learnt a lot from it.”

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The Sunbury junior is open to moving interstate to realise his AFL dream and has family members who hail from Western Australia, including his dad.

AFL Media draft expert Cal Twomey is predicting Fremantle to select Goater with pick No.21 on the opening night of the draft.

“I’ve got a bit of family over there in WA and dad’s originally from WA,” Goater said.

“It would be great to stay in Melbourne if I can, but I’m not someone to shy away from going interstate.

“I’ve had this dream to be an AFL footballer all my life and I would do anything to make that a reality.”

The 2021 National Draft gets underway on Wednesday night.


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