Scarlett steps away from coaching Cats

Matthew Scarlett at training in 2016, when he began coaching at Geelong Cats.

Legendary Geelong Cats backman Matthew Scarlett has confirmed he is stepping away from his role as an assistant coach.

“It has been an incredible journey, much more than I could ever have hoped for when I joined the club,” Scarlett said.

“I have enjoyed coaching, but the time is right to take a break. The relationships I have formed over my time at the club will remain with me forever.

“I would like to thank the club, the coaches I have worked with and the players for making it such an enjoyable experience.

“I will really miss the ‘misfits’ – a great group to work with. I wish the club success in the future.”

Geelong Cats football general manager Simon Lloyd paid tribute to Scarlett’s contribution to the club.

“Matthew has enjoyed huge success as both a player and as coach at the club, and we wish he and his family well in his future,” Lloyd said.

“Matthew has always sought to make the Geelong Football Club better, both as a player and in his role as a member of the coaching staff.

“There is no doubt that many players improved greatly under his guidance.

“Matthew has barely had any time outside the game over the past 23 years, most of which have been here at GMHBA Stadium. His contribution to the club has been enormous.”

Scarlett enjoyed a stellar career in the navy and white hoops, earning an induction into the Australian football hall of fame in 2018.

He played 284 games, and is a triple premiership player, a best and fairest winner and a six-time All-Australian.

Scarlett has spent the past eight seasons coaching at the club, first as a development coach and then as an assistant since 2016.

The Cats have reached the finals in each of the past six seasons and have regularly been among the highest rated defensive teams in the AFL.