PORT ADELAIDE midfielder Karl Amon admitted it was a difficult decision to make whether to return home or stay in South Australia, but ultimately he believed his best football would be at Alberton.
The silky wingman this week agreed to a three-year contract extension, which will tie him to the Power until the end of 2022.
Amon played 17 games this season - which would’ve been more had it not been for a medial ligament injury suffered in Round 2 – but the temptation to return home was always there.
“To be honest it was a tough decision,” Amon told SEN’s Breakfast program on Friday morning.
“Once interest comes from back home, I think probably everyone in the AFL would look at going back home, but it was a decision based around my football.
“I know Port Adelaide has put a lot of faith in me the last few years. I’ve had a good year personally, and the best football for me going forward is at Port Adelaide.”
Amon had a career-best year in 2019, registering career-highs for kicks (17 vs Geelong), handballs (15 vs St Kilda), disposals (28 vs Richmond), marks (seven vs Essendon) and tackles (nine vs Hawthorn), and the 24-year-old puts that down to a greater self-confidence and belief.
“I played my 50th game this year, and when you get to that level you do feel like you belong,” he said.
“Once you start to have a few solid games, you do start to get that self-confidence and believe you can play at the AFL level.
“That’s been the massive thing for me this year, is knowing that I belong in the AFL and I can have a real impact on games.
“I can actually feel that as a player.”
The left-footer’s form this season was a stark contrast to that of last year - where he only managed six games – and at the time, he agreed with the club to explore his options outside of Alberton.
“It was a pretty tough year,” Amon said.
“I wasn’t selected for Round 1, which I was pretty disappointed about, and then from there, I had a few injuries.
“I had a really good stint in the SANFL for about 6-8 weeks in the back half of the year. I played inside mid the whole time, and I really developed my footy.
“Ken (Hinkley) and I had some pretty honest conversations with about four weeks to go in the season.
“We thought if there was an opportunity to come home, we would look at that, but certainly I was more than happy fulfilling the final year of my contract.”
Part of the reason for Amon recommitting with the Power until at least 2022 is the excitement and talent he sees in the list moving forward, but he knows the side must become more consistent to progress to the next level.
“We showed our potential this year,” he said.
“As a group, we need to be more consistent. What the club did last year in the off-season, bringing quality people in.
“Our three top 20 draftees played all year - they were really quality. We’ve also got a good young group of players aged from 21-26.
“We certainly believe we have a good group going forward - it’s just about being consistent - and the more football we play together, the better we’ll be.”