NORTH Melbourne spearhead Ben Brown is holding out hope he will be able to bring his wife and 18-month-old daughter to the club's Queensland hub from next week.

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Footballers' family situations are set to be a significant talking point as all 10 Victorian clubs pack their bags after round five to head to NSW or Queensland for the next month.

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Richmond captain Trent Cotchin, who has three young children, said this week there was a "genuine chance" not every Tiger would be willing to live in a hub for an extended period.

Melbourne is another club in an interesting spot, with the partners of Jake Lever, Tom McDonald and Jack Viney all having babies this year.

The AFL is yet to make a definitive decision on the matter, although it's likely only those in certain situations will be able to bring their family.

It's already been a hectic week for Brown and the Kangaroos, who were impacted more than any other club after 10 Victorian postcodes were identified as COVID-19 'hotspots'.

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That meant 12 North footballers, including Brown, and four staff members had to move into alternative accommodation frantically organised by football boss Brady Rawlings and others.

Brown, his wife Hester and their daughter Aila relocated to an Airbnb property on Wednesday but ended up shifting again the next day to a family friend's home.

"We got told about 1.30pm the other day (Wednesday) that we had to be out by 11.59pm, so we had to move pretty quickly," Brown told

"We hadn't had any indication before that we had to move out, and we were kind of just throwing stuff in bags pretty much to get us through.

"Obviously, with the young one – Aila's just turned 18 months – there was a bit of organising that had to be done … let's just say it was a pretty hectic 24-48 hours."

Brown, who made clear he did not want to be seen to be complaining, said discovering the Airbnb townhouse they were staying at had stairs meant it wasn't ideal for a young child.


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They briefly lived at Hester's sister's boyfriend's parents' home while they were in-between houses last year and they asked if they could do the same for a few more days this week.

"It meant a lot for them, too, because the people we're moving in with have to live by the AFL protocols now," Brown said.

So we didn't want to throw those effects on to other people without giving it some thought first.

- Ben Brown

Jy Simpkin and Paul Ahern, who were staying with captain Jack Ziebell, Ziebell's girlfriend Shannon and Mason Wood, have now moved in where Brown was.

The various unknowns of moving into Queensland hub life for 30-odd days are somewhat daunting for Brown but he said he understood how important it was for the season to continue.

Dealing with it will be a lot easier if Hester and Aila are there with him.

"It's definitely my preference to have them there, and I'd love that to be the way it panned out," Brown said.

"It will largely depend on what the offering is for families, because if it's a case of Aila being in a hotel room (quarantining) for a certain period of time, she might not deal so well with that.

"We've got a lot to weigh up."