AFTER 14 years in the AFL industry, Carlton stoppages coach John Barker will depart the Club after 10 years at the Blues.

Barker had recently approached the Club to inform them of his intention to step aside from AFL at the end of the season and focus on expanding his corporate interests and opportunities.

The Club held continued discussions with Barker and have since mutually decided that with the upcoming mid-season break, it would be an opportune time for Barker to depart the Club this week to enable the Club to plan for the future and allow Barker to actively pursue his next steps.

Since joining Carlton as an assistant coach in 2011, Barker has held various positions, including backline coach and forwards coach, and has taken on the role as stoppages coach for the past two seasons. 

Barker’s coaching career has spanned over 14 years, with time spent as an assistant coach at St Kilda in 2007 and 2008 and as a forwards coach at Hawthorn in 2009 and 2010. The former key forward played a total of 168 games with Fitzroy, Brisbane and Hawthorn between 1994-2006. 

Carlton Head of Football, Brad Lloyd thanked Barker for his time at the Club and acknowledged the contribution made during his period at the Blues.

“On behalf of the entire club, I’d like to take this opportunity to acknowledge John’s efforts over the past 10 years and thank him for his contribution to the Club.

“John is a quality person who was outstanding not only with our playing group but also with the entire wider club, including staff and our corporate network.

“He has been a valued member of our football club and has played an integral role in the development of our playing list during his time at the Blues.”

John Barker thanked the Club for the opportunities afforded to him during his tenure at the Blues and said he was grateful for the relationships he had built over 10 years.

“I’ve absolutely loved my time in footy, and most of all I’ve loved the relationships I’ve built during my time in the game,” Barker said.

“However, over the past 12 months I’ve been able to take the time to reflect on what’s most important to me and given the nature of the role and all it commands, I’ve made the decision to explore other avenues outside of football, and most importantly with my family at the forefront of this decision.”