FREMANTLE coach Justin Longmuir has welcomed the Dockers' ambitious strategic plan, declaring the club had assembled a core group of players capable of delivering a maiden premiership by 2025. 

After two seasons leading the Dockers through another youth-led rebuild, Longmuir ensured he will have an opportunity to steer the club towards that goal by confirming a contract extension through to 2024 on Wednesday. 

After finishing 12th and 11th in his two seasons in charge, the coach said Fremantle would be pressing for a return to finals in 2022, ending a six-season drought.  

"We're building a core group of players that can take us to the aims in the strategic plan," Longmuir said on Wednesday.

07:12 Mins
Published on

The driving force behind Longmuir's coaching passion

Fremantle coach Justin Longmuir shares his coaching journey and insights in the Art of Coaching series

Published on

"I think as a football club, we haven't been as ambitious as we're being right now. 

"We're here to build a list and a footy team and a footy program that allows us to be at the top for a long period of time. We don't want to be a flash in the pan. 

"We need to get a lot right for that to happen, and I think we're on the right track. But we're definitely not satisfied."

MARK THESE IN YOUR CALENDAR 22 mouthwatering games you won't want to miss in 2022

Longmuir had one year to run on his initial three-year contract after replacing Ross Lyon at the end of 2019, adding a further two years to his deal under the extension announced on Wednesday.

He said the Dockers' goals for a premiership by the end of 2025 would not change his approach, allowing him to "set and hold our staff and players to high standards". 

I'm not here to shy away from what we want to achieve. The club has been really ambitious, and we need to step up as a footy department.

- Fremantle coach Justin Longmuir

Asked about how he would measure success in 2022, Longmuir said building on last season's 10 wins and becoming a more consistent team was the key.   

"The natural progression is, last year we were on the edge of finals for a lot of the second half of the year and we didn't get it done," the coach said. 

"So a lot of our framing over the pre-season has been around taking that next step … that should allow us to press for finals and play finals footy. 

"I'm not here to shy away from what we want to achieve. The club has been really ambitious, and we need to step up as a footy department."

Fremantle coach Justin Longmuir with draftees Jye Amiss and Neil Erasmus on November 24, 2021. Picture: AFL Photos

Captain Nat Fyfe is continuing a running program as he targets a return to contact training in February after multiple shoulder setbacks. 

Longmuir said he did not doubt the dual Brownlow medallist's ability to return to his best, regardless of whether he was available to start the season. 

"I'm really confident 'Fyfey' will play a significant part of the season and be a great captain and a great captain like he always has been," he said. 

Nat Fyfe at Fremantle training on December 2, 2021. Picture: Fremantle FC

“Whether that's round one or round two, we don't need to put a date on it and put that pressure on him. 

"I know the person and I know how hard he works and how diligent he is. I just know he'll get back and play a really important role for us."

Elsewhere, talented forward Sam Sturt is targeting a return to full training after Christmas, while midfielder Luke Valente has "work to do" but will be in the mix for midfield spots next season.     

Key forward Matt Taberner is due to return to full training at the end of January following ankle surgery.