David Teague has been appointed Carlton’s full-time coach. Picture: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images.
David Teague has been appointed Carlton’s full-time coach. Picture: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images.

Training wheels off as ‘excited’ Teague rallies Blues

CARLTON has announced caretaker David Teague has earned a three-year deal as the club's new senior coach tries to restore the club to an AFL power.

A combination of people power and player lobbying ultimately forced the Blues' hand.

Teague, 38, made an immediate impact after taking over from Brendon Bolton, who was sacked after Round 11.

A gutsy second-half fightback against premiership favourites Richmond on Sunday helped tip the scales in Teague's favour.


The Blues made it official on Thursday morning, club president Mark LoGiudice saying Teague was the man for the big task that lay ahead.

"We could not be happier to have not only a quality coach but a quality person such as David helping lead our club into an exciting era," LoGiudice said.

"Whilst we are very clear on how much work we have in front of us, we look forward to David and his coaching team continuing to develop the exciting list that we have assembled at Carlton".

Teague can't wait to get started.

"While I am proud to be given this great opportunity to coach our football club, my overwhelming feeling is excitement for what we can achieve together," the 38-year-old said.

"The support that not only myself, but our entire playing and coaching group have felt, is a real sign that the entire Carlton family believes in the direction we are heading.

"I will be giving everything I have to see our club achieve success and I have no doubt our players will give their heart and soul as well. Off the back of the incredible support received so far from our fans, I'm confident that our unity as a football club is one that is capable of delivering our members premierships."

There was no talk of training wheels as Carlton CEO Cain Liddle said the club was confident it had the right man.

"We set out to find the very best coach to hit the ground running and take our football club forward," Liddle said.

"We could not have been clearer with all candidates that the expectations of our members was immediate and significant improvement in performance. I think I can speak on behalf of all our members when I say that we have definitely seen that.

"Our extensive profiling of our playing group and coaches gives us confidence that David's coaching style and personality traits were exactly what we are looking for in order to complement those of the playing group. David has experienced an extensive, 12-year coaching journey and in the view of the selection panel, he quite simply could not be more ready".

Triple Brisbane Lions premiership star and Port Adelaide assistant coach Michael Voss was interviewed for the role, while club chiefs also made an unsuccessful "Hail Mary" play for Hawthorn master coach Alastair Clarkson.

Support for Teague grew throughout his reign as interim coach, the Blues' more-attacking style evident as results also improved.

"The boys are having a really good time. They are enjoying themselves. That's the start for the future," Blues great Mark Maclure said on Fox Footy.

"We didn't have to go out and chase a whole lot of people because he knows the place pretty well.

"I think he's the right guy, absolutely he is. Who's had a better resume than him?

"Changed them dramatically from where they were. Scoring went up by 30-40 points a game. It's just a massive difference and the people love it."

He has steered the Blues to a 5-4 record since taking charge.

"He'll be great for the club," Blues powerbroker Bruce Mathieson declared.

"He seems to have a great rapport with the players. He's a Carlton man."

Teague, who hails from Katandra, near Shepparton, played 33 games for North Melbourne before another 50 at the Blues between 2001-06.

He is the second interim coach to win the full-time job this season after Rhyce Shaw's rapid appointment at North Melbourne.

St Kilda caretaker Brett Ratten is also tipped to get the nod at Moorabbin.

Carlton's coaching selection committee included footy director Chris Judd, president Mark LoGiudice, football boss Brad Lloyd and chief executive Cain Liddle.

Judd muddied the waters over Teague's prospects last month by declaring Bolton's replacement would not be an inexperienced coach with "training wheels".