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Blues beef up list

Winchelsea recruits Joey Fama (left), Will Ford and Matt Costello. (krockfootball.com.au Image/Al Packer)

BRENDAN Forssman’s decision to to recruit for specific need ahead of the 2018 season has already paid off.

The Winchelsea coach last night confirmed Matt Costello, Joey Fama, Will Ford and Mitch McDonald as arrivals at Eastern Reserve.

“We identified six or seven gaps at the end of the year that we’d like to fill,” Forssman said.

“We’ve been able to fill four of those at the moment, and we’re still waiting on a few others at this point in time.

“We’ve target recruited, not just going and getting whoever.

“The guys that we’ve brought will definitely fill spots that we need filled.”

GDFL: 2018 FIXTURE

Costello, who played 64 GFL senior games with Grovedale after playing TAC Cup with Bendigo Pioneers and with Goulburn Valley league club Echuca, has also been appointed coach of the Blues Academy, which features players aged 23 and under.

“We spoke about it (Academy) a fair bit last year and we didn’t get around to doing much about it,” Forssman said.

“Nearly 70 per cent of our list is in that age bracket, so we’re going to try and focus a little bit more time and effort into that group, and fast-track them with some extra sessions.

“It won’t all be football related. It’ll be a bit of bonding and getting them enjoying each other’s company.

“And getting them to understand their the future of the club. This is why we’re putting the time and effort into them.”

GDFL: INS & OUTS

Fama, who has joined Winchelsea from St Mary’s, will act as Costello’s assistant, while Ford arrives at the Blues with some senior experience under his belt at Barwon Heads.

He kicked three goals in the Seagulls’ Colts Division 2 grand final success in September.

McDonald is a mobile 198cm ruckman/key forward who last played with St Mary’s Colts in 2013.

He was named best-on-ground in the Saints’ 2012 premiership success.

“He’s just looking to get back into footy, and he knows a few boys down here,” Forssman said.

“I know him through playing cricket against him. I touched base with him 12-18 months ago to see if he wanted to get back involved.

“He went overseas for about five months this year. So that’s why he didn’t play this year.

“But when he got back from overseas, he was keen to jump on board.”

As well as welcoming some new faces, Alex Gubbins and Jared Dunkley will be recruits for Forssman.

In his first year after arriving from Grovedale, Gubbins was limited to just six games, while serious concussion meant Dunkley could manage just five appearances.

Former Belmont Lions Heath Walsh also played only six matches.

“I know that ‘Heater’s’ been doing a fair bit of work with James Tsitas getting his body right,” Forssman sad.

“When you add that up with the guys that we’ve signed, and the couple we hope to sign, we think we can make some inroads into the competition.”

Twitter: @tom_king79