TASMANIANS IN THE AFL 2017: Clarence's Josh Green says Essendon is starting to feel like home
26 Jan 2017, 1 p.m.
The Essendon Football Club is starting to feel like home to Josh Green.
The small-forward from Clarence has settled into life at Tullamarine since the Bombers gave him a lifeline as a delisted free agent in November.
“I’m really starting to forge some relationships with the guys here and really learn how the club works both on and off field,’’ the 24-year-old told Fairfax Media at the cub’s training base.
“This is a really good club and they have made me feel very welcome.
“Everyone is here for the one cause, and that is to win the premiership, and that is something I am really excited about.”
The ex-Lion has recently returned to full training, with his foot issues seemingly a thing of the past.
“I don’t think I have ever been this fit since I have been in the AFL, which is great.
“I’ve dropped three and a half kilos, the skinfolds are really low and I am running on the top of the ground, so I do feel I have prepared myself well enough to really have a good shot at it this year.”
Green, who kicked 107 goals in 81 games for Brisbane, twice leading their goal-kicking, said he had some “simple” aims as he starts his second AFL life.
“I’m just trying to create my own spot here and hopefully play 15-20 games and around goals get up around near that 30 mark.
“Some people might think that is a bit high, but I’ve been there before, so why not?
“Ultimately, I haven’t had much team success, so that is the ultimate aim.
“The expectation here for success is quite high and that’s what I’m enjoying.”
To do that he knows he will need to develop a strong relationship with the taller types inside 50, including Joe Daniher, Cale Hooker, James Stewart and fellow Tasmanian Thomas Bellchambers.
“We have some guys here who can really crash the packs and get the ball to ground, but we do need to work on those relationships.
“That takes time, as it is really just about getting to know each other and how we go about our football.”
Overall, Green is thankful to still have an opportunity, especially at a club such as Essendon.
Former Swan Xavier Richards is a reminder of how quickly it can end.
Both Green and Richards rejected contract offers from their former clubs, but unlike the Tasmanian, Richards was unable to find a spot on a list.
“I won’t lie, I did knock back a three year deal and it almost did come back and bite me.
“You look at what happened there (with Richards) and you do think about the risk.
“But I wasn’t really that happy at Brisbane, so I bit the bullet and hoped someone would take the punt.
“I think it has been really good for me that I have had to prove myself and this was a new challenge I needed.”
Essendon will open their JLT Community Series campaign against Collingwood at Etihad Stadium on February 16.