Steve Johnson has been announced as the new coach at Ovens and Murray League club Yarrawonga for the next two years.

Johnson, who played 253 games for Geelong and 40 for GWS across his career, worked as an assistant coach at both Sydney and the Giants after his retirement in 2017, departing the latter last month.

The 39-year-old is originally from Wangaratta, recruited from the Murray Bushrangers and drafted by the Cats with pick no.24 in the 2001 national draft.

Yarrawonga released a statement to confirm the appointment, crediting football director Leigh Ramsdale for bringing Johnson to the club.

“The initial process led by Leigh Ramsdale explored contacts through Tom Lonergan and various other league football affiliations of the Pigeons, but the coup of landing Steve was an outcome the club could only have dreamt of when it kicked off the process mid-year,” Yarrawonga said in a club statement.

“The outcome is a testament to commitment and drive of Leigh and coach Mark, to improve not only the playing group, but the club as a whole.

“While Steven's football and coaching pedigree speaks for itself, with 293 AFL games and over 500 goals, combined with experience with both the Sydney Swans and GWS as an assistant coach, the club is equally excited about the addition of Steve's family to our junior programs.

“That, combined with his love for the area (in particular the golf and water skiing) means Yarrawonga was the perfect destination to raise a family, surrounded by family.

“Steve and his family will relocate to the area soon with his children to attend school locally.”