FORMER AFL player Angus Monfries and Shawn Filo will co-coach Maiden Gully YCW in the Loddon Valley league next year.
The Eagles on Wednesday night unveiled Monfries and Filo as their new leaders at a time when the club is also going through the process of seeking to enter an under-18 team into the Bendigo league next season.
Filo is no stranger to the LVFNL having previously coached Pyramid Hill in 2012, while Monfries is a former 211-game AFL player with Essendon (2005-12) and Port Adelaide (2013-17).
Filo and Monfries have co-coached together at Lake Boga in the Central Murray league since 2022.
Monfries, 36, will be a playing coach and Filo a non-playing coach.
"The travelling for both Angus and myself going up to Lake Boga has taken it's toll and this is an opportunity at Maiden Gully YCW we're looking forward to in terms of the direction the club wants to go," Filo said on Wednesday.
They take over at Maiden Gully YCW off the back of the Eagles claiming this year's wooden spoon with only three wins.
"I've been in this position a few times of taking over a club in a similar position, whether that's Lake Boga or Kerang back in the early days," Filo said.
"Usually what happens when you go to a side that has been struggling is there are players leaving, so the main thing at this point in time is player retention.
"We know we'll lose a few players, so it's about getting to work and making sure we don't lose too many more.
"The club is working on a new beginning with their under-18s and, hopefully, there's some good kids coming through, but we understand we've got to field a competitive side and we think we'll be able to fill a lot of the positions that are gone.
"Angus and myself have got some hard work to do that has to get moving quick, but we're definitely not going to be panicking about the situation.
"We know it's going to be a challenge, but I remember Simon Jorgensen [Castlemaine 1992 premiership team-mate] used to say to me that you don't take on a top side because there's only one way you can go."
Monfries and Filo head to Maiden Gully YCW off the back of Lake Boga finishing fifth this year following a fourth-placed finish in 2022 in what was the club's first finals appearance in 12 years.
Monfries played 36 games and kicked 84 goals during his Lake Boga stint.
"Angus is still playing really good football and is the type of player who can play anywhere given he's got quite a few strings to his bow," Filo said.
"I'd say he'll probably play more across half-back next year, but depending on what firepower we've got, if we also had the luxury of playing him in a forward pocket he's a fairly hard match-up and he can also play as that extra midfielder as well at times."
Filo and Monfries take over as coach at the Eagles from half-back Jay McDonald, who won the club's best and fairest this year.
"Hopefully, we can retain Jay. We'll do what we can to keep him as well as the other players who are still making up their mind," Filo said.
Filo and Monfries have signed with the Eagles for three years.
"We've taken a lot of time in our coaching appointment to make sure we get the right fit, not just for next season, but the future direction of the club," Eagles president Chris Garlick said.
"Having someone of Shaun's experience is priceless to work with us for the future.
"What really impresses us with Angus is his desire to work with and develop junior players.
"And he's a high quality player with tremendous experience, so we're really excited by the appointments."