Beloved Blue Matthew Kreuzer has called time on his career after 13 seasons.
For over a decade Kreuzer has been a heart and soul player of the Carlton Football Club, providing a daily example to his teammates of the importance of strong character and resilience.
The 31-year-old played 189 games in the Navy Blue guernsey, all with courage and pride, underpinned by an elite work rate.
It is those characteristics that made him a fan favourite amongst the Carlton faithful from the moment he was selected with the first overall pick in the 2007 NAB AFL Draft.
The bellowing sound of “Kroooooozzzz” echoing around the stands whenever the No.8 was near the football became an endearing call from Bluebaggers towards their much-loved ruckman.
Kreuzer said he was grateful for all the support he received throughout his career.
“I’ve grown up at the Carlton Football Club, after arriving as a kid back in 2007 and to now be retiring, I’m proud to have worn that Navy Blue guernsey for over a decade,” Kreuzer said.
“Footy has thrown a lot of challenges my way but the one thing that got me through was how much I loved running out with my teammates and the incredible roar of that Carlton crowd when we are up and about.
“There are so many people to thank for supporting me throughout my career. My teammates, coaches, staff and especially my family – I can’t thank you enough.
“I am proud to say I gave everything I had to the footy club and am grateful to all our members and supporters for all the love and passion you provided me over the last 13 years.”
Senior Coach David Teague said the Club was in a great position moving forward because of people like Kreuzer.
“Kreuz was a fantastic footballer for over 10 years and he should be incredibly proud of that,” Teague said.
“What he should be most proud of is the impact he has had on this football club beyond game day. He is one of the most humble, selfless, kind-hearted people you could ever have the pleasure of meeting.
“Every young player who has come to Kreuz for advice or guidance, he has gone above and beyond to provide that for them. Those are things that people don’t see but they make you a great teammate and great club person, which is exactly what Kreuz is.
“Our club has been privileged to have not only a player but a person of the quality of Kreuz for the last 13 years.
“We wish him, his wife Coby and their daughter Elle nothing but the best for the next chapter, they know they will always be welcome back home at our club.”