Newly crowned Brownlow Medal winner Lachie Neale has paid tribute to his wife Julie in a touching acceptance speech.

Neale cruised to victory in the count, finishing with an incredible 31 votes in the shortened 2020 season to join Michael Voss, Jason Akermanis and Simon Black as the only winners of the award from the Brisbane Lions.

During his acceptance speech, the 27-year-old thanked Julie, who was overcome with emotion at his stunning triumph.

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Grand Final
Lachie's emotional thanks

Lachie’s emotional thanks

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“My wife Jules, she’s an amazing human being,” the former Fremantle player said.

“Not many people probably know but she owned a salon in Perth before we decided to move to Brisbane. She had to sell that to come over here and follow my dreams.

“She was doing very well for herself over there but she always puts me ahead of herself when she shouldn’t have to.

“She’s the most selfless person I know and my biggest support, so thank you very much Jules, I love you.”

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Neale also thanked his parents for the support they had shown him and his siblings along the journey.

“My Mum, Amanda, is an amazing person, an amazing woman, I’m very proud to be her son. She’s done so much for me and so much for my siblings as well,” he said.

“My Dad Robbie, our relationship has grown and developed every year and I can honestly say now he’s one of my best mates.

“My step-dad Brett, his support for me throughout the journey has been amazing, He’s such a good man and looks after our family very well.”

Lachie Neale wins the 2020 Brownlow Medal (7 Sport)

Lachie Neale wins the 2020 Brownlow Medal (7 Sport)

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The two-time Fremantle best and fairest winner made the move to the Lions at the end of 2018, which coincided with a meteoric rise up the ladder under coach Chris Fagan.

“To the footy club, I won’t be able to get through everyone, but the staff and the coaching staff and everyone involved in the club, especially this year in such trying times, I think we have done an amazing job and I’m so proud to be part of the organisation from where they have come from to where we are now,” he said.

“It’s a credit to the whole footy club and that starts at the top with Andrew Wellington and Greg Swan down to David Noble and Chris Fagan. I’m so thankful to be part of the organisation.

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“To our players, this award is really for the club and the playing group. Without them I definitely wouldn’t have this medal. You have to be in a pretty successful side and win a lot of games to achieve this. I thank my teammates tremendously for all their work. I love playing with them. They are a great bunch of guys.”

After thanking the AFL, Neale made mention of the club’s fans, who were left wanting after their side’s 40-point defeat at the hands of Geelong in Saturday’s preliminary final at The Gabba.

“To all our Brisbane Lions fans, apologies for last night. We didn’t play our best footy and we were beaten by a better side on the night,” he said.

“I feel like we are on the right track and we are heading to bigger and greater things over the next few years. Stick with us.”

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