Star midfielder Tom Liberatore has pledged his commitment to the Western Bulldogs for two more years.
The 29-year-old was due to come out of contract at season’s end but will remain in red, white and blue after signing a contract extension.
Liberatore has played 163 AFL games since joining the Bulldogs as a father-son selection in the 2010 AFL Draft.
He has been an integral part of the team’s engine room in 2021, playing every game and averaging 24.3 disposals, 8.6 clearances and 5.2 tackles. He leads the competition for clearances (129).
“It’s very exciting to stay on for another couple. I’m certainly looking forward to the next couple of years, and obviously this year as well,” Liberatore said.
“It’s been good to be consistent and keep myself healthy. That allows me to get out on the park and play some good footy each week.
“It’s been extremely pleasing to be part of a group that’s got a lot of chemistry.
“I think we’re in a good place to keep playing good footy and keep challenging the best teams. It’s exciting times ahead.”
Liberatore’s decorated career includes a premiership in 2016 and a Charles Sutton Medal in 2014.
He has continued his strong form this year after an influential 2020 campaign – where he was the Gary Dempsey Medallist (third best and fairest) and won the Brad Johnson Best Team Player and John van Groningen Domestique awards.
“We are delighted to have Tom locked in as a Bulldog for a further two years,” General Manager of List Management and Football Projects, Sam Power, said.
“Tom is a heart-and-soul player who has been an important part of our football club for a long period of time. Over the past couple of years, he has been able to have a clean run with injury and has been a consistent and influential member of our midfield group.
“He had a brilliant 2020 season and has taken his game to another level this year. Tom’s work in and around the contest is second-to-none and he’s been able to regularly impact the scoreboard in 2021.
“As one of our more experienced players, Tom is having a real impact in the growth of the group. His selfless, team-oriented approach continues to inspire his teammates and make those around him better players.”