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Voss, Blues hand Fantasia an AFL career lifeline

3 minute read

Former Port Adelaide and Essendon forward Orazio Fantasia has extended his AFL career by joining Carlton as a de-listed free agent.

ORAZIO FANTASIA. Picture: Morne de Klerk/Getty Images

Orazio Fantasia has reunited with Michael Voss at Carlton in a bid to reignite his injury-riddled AFL career.

The 28-year-old small forward has joined the Blues as a de-listed free agent on a two-year contract.

He will arrive at Ikon Park for Voss's third year at the helm after the pair spent the 2021 season together at Port Adelaide, where Voss was an assistant coach.

Fantasia played 15 games for the Power that year, but has since managed only four senior appearances.

At his best, the former Essendon speedster was among the most dangerous small forwards in the competition.

He kicked 39 goals for the Bombers in 2017, before injuries curtailed his progress.

Fantasia was courted by GWS in recent weeks, but opted to join Carlton's talented list of small forwards alongside Jesse Motlop, Jack Martin, Matt Owies, Matthew Cottrell and Lachie Fogarty.

Carlton list boss Nick Austin said Fantasia will help drive performance by adding competition for spots in the Blues' senior side.

"Orazio is a quality AFL footballer," Austin said in a club statement.

"He'll bring his extensive skill set into our environment and will have everything at his disposal to maximise that ability."

Fantasia has kicked 141 career goals, but has been stuck on 99 AFL appearances since round three last season.

"When we sat down with Orazio during the off-season, one thing that was clear was his hunger to get back to senior football," Austin said.

"Both we and Orazio see the strength he can bring to our front half.

"Along with the acquisition of Elijah Hollands, we have added ready-made, AFL-level talent who will hit day one of pre-season ready to push for senior selection."