Bootsma signs with Thunder
Bootsma signs with Thunder

Sacked Carlton defender Josh Bootsma will revive his career at WAFL club Peel Thunder as early as next month.

The 21-year-old has requested a transfer from original club South Fremantle to Peel where father and former Docker, Brad Bootsma, works as football manager.

The Bulldogs were told last week that Bootsma had declined the invitation to play with them.

While disappointed, it is understood South Fremantle will not stand in the way of the transfer.

The switch to Peel will be processed within days given the looming June 30 clearance cut-off.

The transfer fee is expected to be $15,000. Bootsma would be a 10-point player on Peel's roster.

A statement from Bootsma's management group Stride said the transfer had been requested on "compassionate grounds".

"With what he's been through and where he's at with everything, being in a structure closer to family makes a lot of sense," the statement said.

"We've really wanted to be able to get around Josh and support him.

"We've been most concerned about his welfare and have looked at where was going to be the next best place for him to play his football here from a welfare point of view."

Carlton terminated Bootsma's contract earlier this month, citing a string of disciplinary issues, including posting explicit photos on social media, as the reason behind their decision.

Bootsma is expected to initially live with his father after making the move back to WA.

His girlfriend is due to join him in the Peel region over coming weeks.

A return with Peel will allow Bootsma to resurrect his career under the guidance of an AFL coaching system given the WAFL club's alignment to the Dockers.

Once cleared, Bootsma would be eligible to play for the Thunder immediately, with a return by either mid or late July likely.

The No.22 draft pick played 14 AFL games in three seasons.

We've been most concerned about his welfare …"Stride management

The West Australian

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