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Luckless former Swan in dual role with Northern Blues

Alex Johnson after rupturing the ACL in his 'good' knee against Melbourne in round 21 - AFL,Injuries,Alex Johnson,Sydney Swans
Alex Johnson after rupturing the ACL in his 'good' knee against Melbourne in round 21

LUCKLESS defender Alex Johnson has accepted a dual role at Carlton's VFL affiliate, the Northern Blues, as he continues his recovery from a sixth knee reconstruction.

Johnson, 26, will become the club's head of development, and will play for the Northern Blues when he returns from yet another ACL injury sustained in August.

The highly-respected defender was a premiership player at Sydney in 2012, but missed nearly six years after suffering successive setbacks to knee injuries that cruelled his career.

Johnson underwent five knee reconstructions after first rupturing his ACL in 2013, only to rupture the ACL on his 'good' knee in just his second AFL match back late last season.

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He was subsequently delisted by the Swans, having played 47 matches in eight years.

Johnson assisted Sydney's NEAFL side in various development roles while recovering from his series of knee injuries and will assume a similar position with the Northern Blues.

"We're thrilled to welcome Alex to the fold. He's one of the most committed people I've ever met," the club's football boss Ben Brennan said.

"He's definitely got a unique outlook on football and has a lot of experience in a number of areas. The way he has responded to setbacks has shown enormous character and he will be a tremendous addition to our group — he already has been.

"As a player, we know he's been through a lot, but we know what he's capable of, and both he and the club have full confidence he can get back to full fitness. 

"'AJ's already had experience in the development space, which is pretty unique for someone his age. He's already started working with Josh Fraser and he'll be another valuable voice for our players."