The AFL has confirmed 22 licences for the 2021 VFL and East Coast Second-Tier Competition with clubs to be based in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria all confirmed to line-up in 2021.

The largest second-tier football competition in Australia is set to begin in April next year and will consist of a 16-round season, providing all players with a premium standard of football.

Confirmed licences:
Standalone Second-Tier Clubs: Aspley, Coburg, Frankston, Northern Bullants, Port Melbourne, Southport, Werribee, Williamstown
Standalone AFL Clubs: Brisbane Lions, Carlton, Collingwood, Essendon, Footscray, Geelong Cats, Gold Coast SUNS, GWS GIANTS, North Melbourne, Richmond, Sydney Swans
Aligned Clubs: Sandringham, Box Hill Hawks, Casey Demons

The VFL and East Coast Second-Tier Competition will integrate into a streamlined calendar for men’s football with the 2021 NAB League Boys, with both seasons set to begin in April, running concurrently with the 2021 Toyota AFL Premiership Season.

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All clubs will have connections to community clubs and pathway programs, including a varied alignment to Under-19 NAB League Clubs for Victorian-based teams.

The name of the competition will be announced in the coming weeks with the competition to maintain a strong connection to the heritage of the respective Hard Yakka / Totally workwear VFL and Toyota NEAFL competitions and the communities who support them.

The VFL and East Coast Second-Tier Competition will sit alongside the SANFL and the WAFL in 2021 to provide players with the highest level of second-tier football. The AFL will continue to work with all AFL Clubs on their non-selected AFL players ahead of their respective 2021 seasons.

The AFL will continue to work closely with AFL NSW / ACT and AFL Queensland to ensure the continued development and progression of premier men’s and women’s competitions in the State and Territory.

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The salary cap is set at $200,000 for standalone clubs and $100,000 for AFL and aligned clubs. As previously communicated, there will be no license fee payable by any club to participate in the 2021 Second-Tier Competition with the AFL to subsidise all approved Club travel for interstate matches.

A date for commencement of pre-season training ahead of the 2021 season will be advised in due course.

The AFL will continue to review all arrangements including return-to-train and return-to-play protocols in consultation with clubs, the various State Governments and respective Health Officers to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved in this competition remains the priority.

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