West Coast strength and conditioning manager Warren Kofoed. Picture: westcoasteagles.com.au

WEST Coast fitness boss Warren Kofoed will depart at the end of the season, with the long-serving strength and conditioning manager choosing to step down from his position. 

Meanwhile, the Eagles have responded to criticism of the way they handled Jake Waterman's recent stint in hospital after it was revealed the forward has been diagnosed with a bowel disease that has the potential to threaten his career.  

As the fallout to Saturday's disastrous record-breaking 171-point loss to Sydney continued, it was the well-regarded Kofoed, who has served the Eagles since 2008, who was the first off-field domino to fall. 

His departure comes after a second consecutive season with the list decimated by injuries and the club regularly picking a team from as few as 25 fit players. 


The Eagles said Kofoed had been a key pillar in the club bouncing back from the 2010 wooden spoon to then play finals, preparing the group for a period of sustained success that included the 2015 Grand Final and 2018 premiership. 

The unprecedented nature of the Eagles' injury issues in 2022 and 2023, however, has thrust scrutiny onto the club's strength and conditioning program. 

Waterman is among 16 Eagles currently sidelined after falling ill prior to the club's round 13 match against Adelaide and returning to Perth ahead of the team. 

Waterman's father, dual premiership Eagle Chris Waterman, on Monday criticised the way the club had handled the period during which his son returned to Perth and then attended hospital. 


He revealed the forward had been diagnosed with Ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease that is commonly managed with medication and in some cases surgery. 

Waterman spent a week in hospital and was released last Monday, with his immediate future in the game unclear as he undergoes further treatment and tests. 

"There's that small percentage, according to the doctors, [of not playing again]," Waterman snr told SEN. 

"They'll be pulling out every string for it not to happen. They want to get him back to normal health, and that's where they're all heading towards. I think that's where it's going to head."

Waterman snr said he expected the Eagles to have made more contact with his son, who returned to Perth on Saturday June 10, when the Eagles faced the Crows at Adelaide Oval, checking into hospital two days later. 


General manager of football Gavin Bell said the club made contact with Waterman before leaving Adelaide, with the club doctor also checking in numerous times on Sunday and Monday. 

"We got him into a sports GP clinic, where he went and there was consequent follow-up from there," Bell said.

"Then on the Monday, when our club doctor checked in again, Jake's condition had deteriorated and a decision was made to contact a specialist in the area. 

"From those conversations, we were able to admit Jake straight into hospital and receive the care he needed. 

"We made contact with Jake to make sure he was OK and see if there was anything he needed. But he was pretty unwell at that time."