VFL's Development League Gets Canned

'This is not viable'

VFL's Development League Gets Canned

(Image: Getty)

AFL Victoria has confirmed the VFL development league, the competition below the VFL, will be scrapped at the end of the year.

AFL Victoria chief executive Steven Reaper said the competition was too costly, and the focus needed to be on ensuring the future of the VFL.

“Pressures on clubs have been mounting over a number of years, both financially and from an administration perspective, relating to the Development League,” he said.

“With only eight of the 14 clubs fielding a development team, scheduling difficulties have grown each year, adding pressure to staff and volunteers with games increasingly being played at different grounds and often on different days to senior VFL games.

“The cost of running the Development League currently sits in excess of one million dollars between the competition and the clubs, and this is both not viable nor the best possible use of investment into the future when we are seeing clubs experience financial difficulties."

Box Hill, Casey, Coburg, Northern Blues, Port Melbourne, Sandringham, Werribee and Williamstown all have development league sides.

Williamstown coach Andy Collins wasn't too pleased with the decision.

"They say they want to build the game, but we've lost eight teams of men's football – we haven't created another eight teams," he told afl.com.au.

"We talk about Frankston coming back in and North Melbourne and Werribee will need a few more players...but there will be about 120 talented young men spat out of footy, and they may not have a footy home now."