AFL Rd 2 - Carlton v Melbourne
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 13: Harley Bennell of the Demons in action during the 2020 AFL Round 02 match between the Carlton Blues and the Melbourne Demons at Marvel Stadium on June 13, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

VFL club Port Melbourne have unveiled former three-club AFL player Harley Bennell as their latest high-profile signing for the 2023 season.

Bennell last played at AFL level in 2020, featuring for Melbourne where he played five games for the club after joining Demons in the pre-season.

Bennell's move to Melbourne came after previous stints with the Gold Coast Suns and Fremantle, where he tallied 83 games in nine years.

Both injuries and off-field indiscretions hampered Bennell's career, which was touted to go far after joining the Suns as the second overall pick in the 2010 National Draft.

The Peel Thunder product has since plied his trade in  Western Australia and the Northern Territory, and recently featured in the NTFL's representatives game against South Fremantle where he was awarded Man of the Match honours.

The 30-year-old is now heading back to Victoria, with Port Melbourne confirming the signing of the midfield-forward for the season ahead.

“When I spoke to Harley a few weeks ago and it was very evident to me from the start that he has a strong focus and desire to play at the highest level he can and play a major role in contributing to group success, which is exactly what we want at our club," Borough football boss Glenn Balmforth said in a club statement.

PERTH, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 20: Harley Bennell of the Dockers walks back to have a kick on goal during the round 22 AFL match between the Fremantle Dockers and the Richmond Tigers at Domain Stadium on August 20, 2017 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

"For us to have the opportunity to bring to our club somebody of Harley's calibre with his experience and on-field ability at this stage in the pre-season, is very exciting and we can't wait for him to get down to Melbourne and get started as he is sure to excite the red and blue faithful."

Bennell recently revealed plans for one final attempt at rekindling his AFL career after being delisted by Melbourne three years ago.

He joins a host of ex-AFL names at Port Melbourne for the season ahead, with Sam Naismith, Fraser Rosman, Dylan Clare and Tom Hird also signing with the Borough for 2023.

“I'm really excited to get down to Melbourne to meet my new teammates and coaching staff for 2023. I'm just happy to be playing footy at a high level again and whatever happens on the way is a bonus, so I'm going to enjoy this one,” Bennell said.

Port Melbourne are scheduled to open their 2023 VFL season against North Melbourne at Arden Street on Saturday, March 25.