Belushi’s Presents: Player Spotlight
Each week, AFL Europe in combination with Belushi’s will take a look at one of our star players competing in fixtures across the continent in Player Spotlight.
Will Taylor – AFL Europe
Described by his captain as the most dedicated player he has ever met, Clément Meyer is one of the great contributors to Australian Football in Europe.
After discovering the sport through his sister who was living in Toulouse, Clément decided to go to his first AFL training 5 years ago with his now beloved ALFA Lions.
“I arrived there with no idea about how this sport looks like.”
“I discovered the rules with our Australian coach, Pedr and I fell straight in love of footy!”
His love affair with the game can be seen through the multiple tournaments and competitions he has participated in.
While regularly playing for the Lions in the CNFA, Clément first made his appearance on an international scale during the 2015 Euro Cup in Croatia.
“I played with Crusaders and it was a really amazing experience so I decided to go again in 2016 for the EC in Lisbon.”
“When you are a teammate of someone in Europe, even just for one game, you are teammates forever and it is exactly why I love playing Aussie Rules everywhere through Europe.”
In 2017, Clément made the move to Albania but he couldn’t find an Albanian team. Instead he managed to find a game with the Zagreb Hawks from Croatia and competed with the boys in the Croatian Cup earlier this year.
His last international tournament however was the 2018 AFL Europe Champions League where he had the chance to meet up with his former team mates in Amsterdam.
“It was again a crazy tournament for me and it was really funny to have the opportunity to play against some old teammates with who I played with in my past international experiences!”
With many matches comes many memories and that is certainly the case for the French star.
As a moment he believes is a highlight of his career, Clément recalls the 2017 Grand Final in the French Championship as a day he will never forget.
“After 4 years of existence, the club ALFA Lions (Lyon) finished 3 times at the bottom of the ladder, but in 2017, we won all our games and the team were clearly the best in France at this time.
“We arrived in Paris for the Final and the game was organised after a professional rugby game of Top14 (Stade Francais – Racing 92), in a rugby professional field.”
“What is better in your sporting life than entering a field with still 20,000 people in the stadium?”
“We had a big win by more than 60 points against the second best team in France in 2017.”
Now committed to his new life in Albania, Clément is working to progress the game throughout a nation that is foreign to Australian Football.
It’s a task that is without a doubt difficult for someone who is still relatively new to the country, but Clément still has hope that he can grow the sport in the Balkan region.
“Indeed it is what I had in mind before I came here.”
“In Albania and the Balkan countries, it’s already hard to find rugby teams so it will be even harder to find motivated people to try Aussie Rules.”
“But I am still working on that while trying to find Australians in the region or just people who already heard about AFL and would like to try it.”
“So if anyone reading this have some connections with Albania or friends there, let me know and let’s try to develop this sport in the Balkans!”
Forever contributing to both his clubs and the national teams he has represented, Clément has certainly had a profound influence growing Australian Football across the continent.
Is there someone at your club with an outstanding football story that deserves to be recognised? Get in touch, firstname.lastname@example.org