The Ararat Football Netball Club has bolstered its midfield stocks for the 2019 season.
The Rats have signed versatile midfielders Callum Mendes from the Eastern Football League and Dylan Shelley from the Corio Football Club.
Ararat coach Shane Fisher said the pair will add a lot to the list next season.
“Both of them are young and very talented footballers,” he said.
“They are going to add a lot more depth to us and more versatility which we think we have some good versatility at the minute.
“It’s going to strengthen our ability to play a lot more blokes through the midfield and have a lot more class spread across the ground.”
One of the main attractions to get Mendes to the club was through family ties.
Callum’s brothers Nick and Toohey medallist Dan play for the Rats and Fisher said they have all been wanting to get all three to play at the same club.
“Mendes is renowned to have some history with the footy club,” he said.
“We have always wanted the three of them to play together but it has taken a few years to get that to happen.”
For Shelley, it was more about the opportunity to play football outside of Geelong that has drawn him to Ararat.
“He was certainly a type of player we would like to fit into to our program and he wanted to get away from playing in Geelong way for a while,” Fisher said.
Fisher said the club targeted Mendes and Shelley to improve on their midfield strength as well as options across half back and half forward.
“I think if you add more midfielders, you strengthen around the ground because you can have more rotations and you are not relying on three or four blokes to play in the midfield,” he said.
“You can start relying on seven or eight and it adds a lot more depth and structure around the list.”
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