Melbourne's Brent Moloney. Photo: Sebastian Costanzo
Melbourne midfielder Brent Moloney has become the first player to leave his club and explore the new era of free agency.
Moloney, 28, played 122 games in eight seasons for Melbourne, winning the club best and and fairest award and polling 19 Brownlow Medal votes in 2011.But he fell out of favour under new coach Mark Neeld this year.
As a restricted free agent, the Demons would be able to keep Moloney if they matched any offer he received from another club.But Melbourne made it clear on Tuesday they were happy for him to try his luck at a third club, with Moloney having spent two years at Geelong before joining Melbourne in 2005.
"We respect Brent’s position, and the fact that he has been up front with us throughout the process," said Neeld.
"This is the new world of AFL free agency - Brent is a restricted free agent and the rules allow him to explore these opportunities.
"We wish him well for the future."
Moloney said he had enjoyed his time at Melbourne.
"But it’s now time to pursue other opportunities," he said.
"I am grateful for everything the club has given me."
The inaugural free agency period will begin on October 1.