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22. Matthew Lloyd

PROFILE

Matthew Lloyd will be remembered as Essendon's all-time leading goalkicker and one of the game's great full-forwards. Lloyd was picked up in the 1995 pre-season draft in a complex deal that saw three Essendon players move to Fremantle. Lloyd made his senior debut mid-season 1995 against Adelaide kicking a goal with his first kick and finishing the day with three goals.

Lloyd played 11 senior games in 1996 and his seven goals against Adelaide was a season highlight. He kicked 63 goals in 19 games in 1997 to signal the arrival of a talented new spearhead.

In 1998 Lloyd kicked 70 goals, the highest by an Essendon player since 1974 and won All-Australian selection. He followed this with 87 goals in 1999, the second highest in the AFL, and won All-Australian selection for the second time.

2000 was a stellar season for the club and Matthew Lloyd. He reached 100 goals for the first time when he bagged seven in the quarter final against Kangaroos and finished the season with a career high of 109 goals. He won the 2000 Coleman Medal as the league's leading goalkicker and won a premiership medal.

Lloyd continued his outstanding form into 2001 winning All-Australian selection for the fourth year in a row and coming runner-up in the club's best & fairest award. He also won the Coleman Medal for the second year with 105 goals, averaging five goals a game. A downside to his fine season were suspension one forcing him out of the Preliminary Final. He returned for the Grand Final to be one of Essendon's best in the loss to Brisbane.

In 2002 Lloyd was the club's leading goalkicker for the sixth time, equalling the record set by John Coleman. His total of 47 goals for the year was down on previous seasons and came as a result of a finger injury in round 6 causing him to miss seven weeks. After his return he looked set for a great finals series but in the early minutes of the Elimination Final Lloyd was knocked out and missed the remainder of the game and the season.

Lloyd fought back in 2003 to regain his status as the competition's premier full-forward, finishing with 93 goals to secure his third Coleman Medal and also his seventh leading goalkicking award at Essendon. In round 19 against the Bulldogs Lloyd set a new club all-time leading goalkicking record surpassing Simon Madden's record of 575 goals.

In 2004 Lloyd finish runner-up in the Coleman Medal with 96 goals. The following year Lloyd played his 200th game, but his goalkicking was down. Confidence was seen as the problem and he finished the year with 59 goals. Lloyd was appointed captain on the 27th of September 2005 but his first season was ruined by a serious hamstring injury after only three games and he missed the remainder of the year. He returned in 2007 and played his 250th game in rd 20, 2008.

Lloyd entered the 2009 season as the eighth highest goalkicker of all-time and needing only needing only nine goals to reach the 900 mark.

CAREER STATISTICS

Played 1995-
Games 252
Goals 891
EFC Vice Captain 2000-2005
EFC Captain 2006-
Premiership player 2000
Coleman Medal 2000,2001,2003
Top 5 EFC best & fairest finishes 1997-2001
Night Premiership appearances 2000
EFC Leading goalkicker 1997-2005,2007,2008
AFL Leading goalkicker 2000,2001,2003
All Australian 1998,1999,2000,2001,2003
Player honours: 2nd best and fairest 2001, 3rd best and fairest 1997, 1998; All-Australian 1998, 1999, 2000, 2003; Jim Stynes Medal 2001; Coleman Medal 2000, 2001, 2003; EFC leading goalkicker 1997-2005, 2007, 2008; Norwich Union AFL Rising Star nominee 1996; premiership side 2000; pre-season premiership side 2000.