Brendon Goddard is one of five nominees for the AFL Players’ Association Madden Medal, an award that recognises more than on-field performances, with off-field achievements, personal development and community spirit also taken into account.
By Taylah Melki
A highly decorated and well respected member of the AFL community, Brendon Goddard is not one to shy away from the contest.
After spending 15 years in the AFL system sharing his playing career with the Saints and the Bombers, Goddard has dealt with his fair share of highs and lows.
Having played 334 games for both clubs, the two time All-Australian, (2009, 2010) Crichton Medalist (2013) and former Essendon captain was renowned for his passion and love for the game.
While he starred on the field, his off-field work was just as impressive.
“I’m involved with Maddie Riewoldt’s Vision which is obviously a cause pretty close to me,” Goddard told AFLPlayers.com.au.
“Knowing Maddie and being good friends with her, that’s something that I will stay heavily involved with for the rest of my life.
But it hasn’t just been MRV that Goddard has sought to assist over the course of his footballing journey.
“I worked closely with the Purple Bombers the last four or five years, was involved with Sacred Heart Mission at different stages, it’s just something that I’ve enjoyed. Helping others I think for most people is something they really get a kick out of and enjoy.”
Working with people from all walks of life helped to provide Goddard with a different perception on life and emphasized the importance of acceptance of all within the community.
And it is through his time in the system and his various off-field work that the 33-year-old has gained a more rounded view.
“One thing footy has taught me is not to be so judgmental,” he added.
“I was pretty narrow-minded when I was younger and very judgmental.”
Immersed into the AFL system at a young age, Goddard credits a lot of his personal development to those around him, who helped to shape him into the man he is today.
“I was drafted as a 17-year-old, so I was fairly immature and I was still developing into a person and into a man at the time,” he said.
“I developed a lot of my morals based on my coaches that I had and my teammates around me because we spent so much time together. I’m a reflection of the people I played footy with for that period of time,” he said.
Though Goddard was not the first to put his hand up in regards to pursuing education pathways as a youngster, as time went on he underwent a short property construction course held at the club and started to develop important corporate contacts for life after footy.
“At the time I didn’t really focus on it, I was really single minded. But then as you get older you understand. Particularly during that period where I did my knee I realised this could be taken away really quickly from me so I better start focusing on that.”
While football was an essential stepping stone in his life, Goddard is keen to create his own identity away from football, as he looks to further expand his business side through making inroads into the golfing industry along with some other new and exciting opportunities.
ON FIELD ACHIEVEMENTS
- 334 AFL Games
- All-Australian (2009 and 2010)
- Essendon Captain (2016)
- Crichton Medal (2013)
- AFL Rising Star nominee (2003)
- International Rules (2006, 2014, 2015 and 2017)
- St Kilda FC Life Member
- Essendon FC Life Member
- Certificate in Sport (2004)
- Certificate 3 in Fitness (2004)
- Certificate 4 in Frontline Management (2011)
- Diploma in Management (2011)
- Next Coach Program (2018)
- Purple Bombers ambassador
- Embracing India ambassador — worked to assist in the start up and development of Indian specific Auskick program
- Provided fundraising items for community auctions annually