Fremantle midfielder Luke Valente has been forced into retirement after battling with a host of injury issues over the last three seasons.
Fremantle are priced at 9/4 to finish in the top eight of the AFL this season but unfortunately Valente will not be able to play a role after finally giving up on his dream of playing AFL.
Valente arrived at Fremantle as pick No.32 in the 2018 NAB AFL Draft after catching the eye while playing in South Australia and hopes were high for the future.
The 21-year-old was struggling with persistent groin issues and says he finally came to the realisation that his body was not up to the rigours of being a professional footy player.
Valente is now set to return to South Australia to study and get on with the rest of his life without AFL.
"Unfortunately, I have come to the realisation that physically I am unable to make the progress required to play at the elite level," Valente said.
"It was an incredibly difficult decision to make but after a long period of reflection, including discussions with the club, my family, friends and management, I believe that, in terms of my long-term health and well-being, it is the right thing to do."
Freo had high hopes for Valente and thought he would be able to help fill the void following the departure of Adam Cerra but unfortunately it is not be.
"Luke is an outstanding young man of great character, who is both popular with his teammates and highly respected for his determination and endeavour," Freo Footy boss Peter Bell said.
"On behalf of everyone at Fremantle, we wish Luke all the best for the future, knowing that whatever path he chooses he will give it everything he possibly can."