Collingwood’s Nathan Murphy announces heartbreaking medical retirement

Noah Strang
By: Noah Strang
15/04/2024
News
BettingTop10 News
Collingwood hangs up his boots after concussion issues

Murphy, who has suffered ten concussions throughout his seven-year AFL career, decided to call it quits. 

News Insights

  • Collingwood defender Nathan Murphy has announced his retirement from football.
  • Murphy had suffered ten concussions in his career.
  • “I feel it is the right time,” said Murphy.
  • “My priority is on my future.”

The AFL world received shocking and heartbreaking news on Tuesday when Collingwood defender Nathan Murphy announced his retirement from football. The 24-year-old has battled concussions for his entire seven-year AFL career. He says his decision to retire now is to ensure his health in the future. 

Murphy announces retirement 

Collingwood announced on Tuesday that Nathan Murphy has decided to step away from football. “Premiership Pie retires after concussion advice,” the club said via a statement. According to Collingwood’s statement, Murphy’s decision to retire at just 24 years old came after seeking advice from the AFL's medical concussion panel.  
 
Murphy has not played for Collingwood since coming off as a substitute in the Magpies’ 2023 Grand Final victory over Brisbane Lions. The 24-year-old was cleared to return to action by the AFL concussion panel late last year.  
 
However, according to Collingwood, “After further consultation with the club and the AFL, a decision was reached in recent days for Murphy to medically retire from the game, following the Victorian's 10th concussion in the premiership win.” 

Murphy says goodbye

Nathan Murphy spoke to reporters on Tuesday after the announcement.  
 
It has obviously been a long process. The club has been amazing throughout this whole process, they've allowed me to take hold of how I'm feeling and how I want to go about this. It has been a massive journey,” the 24-year-old said.  
 
The last few months have been really tough but I was guided by medical advice that this was the right decision for me. I'm really grateful that it's come to this because they are the professionals and I trust their opinion. 
 
“I'm accepting (of the decision). These guys are the professionals in this space. There is so much unknown in this area that you have to trust the professionals. I'm guided by their decision and really happy they've made this decision." 
 
In a video published on Collingwood’s website, Murphy said, “I love my football, but my priority is on my future and ensuring I live a full and healthy life. I’d like to thank the Club, coaches, teammates, staff and the Magpie Army for all their support throughout my playing career and for allowing me the opportunity to live out my childhood dream of playing AFL.” 
 
To my family and friends, I couldn’t have gone through this journey without your continued love and support which I am so grateful for…I will forever cherish the memories and friends I’ve made at our great Club.” 

Cricket next for Murphy?

While his AFL career is definitely over, Nathan Murphy may have a career in cricket next. The 2023 Premiership winner grew up as a multi-sport athlete, excelling in football and cricket.  
 
Murphy joked that, “I'm going to be the first guy to win a premiership and open the batting for Australia on Boxing Day.” 
 
More seriously, the 24-year-old said, “"I haven't thought about that just yet. It has been a whirlwind few weeks that cricket hasn't come to the front of my mind. But if a few clubs come for me, I'll see.” 

The former defender will take some time to consider his next move. Collingwood CEO Craig Kelly and interim head of football Brendon Bolton said they will assist Murphy during his transition out of football and “are open to having him return in a coaching or administration capacity.” 

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