Dees sign axed Saints AFL coach Richardson

Ex-Saints coach Alan Richardson is back through the AFL doors and will be with the Demons in 2020.
Ex-Saints coach Alan Richardson is back through the AFL doors and will be with the Demons in 2020.

Melbourne have moved to bolster their coaching box after an AFL season from hell, appointing axed St Kilda coach Alan Richardson to support Simon Goodwin.

Richardson had also been linked to North Melbourne and GWS but the Demons confirmed on Friday they had won the race for his services.

Melbourne did not reveal details of Richardson's new role but the 54-year-old is expected to serve as a mentor to Goodwin.

It has been a nightmare campaign for the Demons, who will finish the season 17th on the ladder ahead of only Gold Coast.

The Demons played in a preliminary final last season but little has gone right since they were thrashed in that game by eventual premiers West Coast.

Goodwin has another three years on his contract but the appointment of Richardson in a support role provides him with some additional insurance.

Richardson was sacked by the Saints last month and replaced by Brett Ratten in a caretaker capacity, having overseen a disappointing campaign.

Still highly regarded in AFL circles, Richardson will link up with newly-appointed Demons fitness boss Darren Burgess - a former colleague at Port Adelaide.

"Alan is extremely well respected within the industry and it was no surprise that he had a number of options from other clubs, and we are pleased that he has chosen Melbourne," Demons football boss Josh Mahoney said.

"He brings with him a wealth of knowledge, having filled a number of senior football roles at a number of clubs."

Australian Associated Press