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Melbourne Football Club

AFLW: Birch requests trade to Melbourne

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 09: Libby Birch of the Bulldogs in action during the 2019 NAB AFLW Round 06 match between the Western Bulldogs and the Melbourne Demons at Marvel Stadium on March 09, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media)
She is known for her athleticism and her versatility, which would be a great fit for our list going forward
Todd Patterson

DEFENDER Libby Birch has requested a trade to Melbourne for the 2020 AFL Women’s season.

Birch, who has played 22 games for the Western Bulldogs, informed the Demons of her desire to join the club on the first day of the AFLW Sign and Trade Period.

Melbourne AFLW list manager Todd Patterson was delighted with the news, saying the half-back would be a valuable addition to the red and blue.

“Libby is a proven talent and we are pleased that she has nominated Melbourne as her club of choice,” he told Melbourne Media.

“She is known for her athleticism and her versatility, which would be a great fit for our list going forward.”

A former netballer, Birch made her debut in the opening round of the 2017 AFLW season and has since spent the last three seasons at the Bulldogs.

The 21-year-old was a member of the 2018 Premiership team, while she also received a Rising Star nomination and All-Australian squad selection in the same year.

With strong ties between the two clubs – the Western Bulldogs and Melbourne have led the way as the pioneers of women’s football – Patterson was optimistic of the potential move.

“Given our relationship with the Western Bulldogs, we’re hopeful we will be able to come to an agreement,” Patterson said.

“We’re hopeful we will be able to accommodate Libby, the Bulldogs and ourselves, and welcome a great addition to our football club.”

The Demons have until Tuesday 18 April to complete the deal, before the AFL Sign and Trade Period comes to an end.