Sydney premiership defender Alex Johnson will return to the AFL system for the 2024 season as the latest addition to the Western Bulldogs' new-look coaching group.

Johnson has joined the Dogs as a development coach, adding to the recent additions of Matthew Egan, Jarryn Geary and Daniel Pratt at the Kennel.

The 31-year-old played 47 games for Sydney between 2011 and 2018, having endured a number of setbacks throughout his career.

A member of the Swans' 2012 premiership side, Johnson spoke of his excitement to return to the AFL through his new role with the Western Bulldogs.

“I'm really excited and grateful to be joining the Bulldogs' coaching staff,” Johnson said in a club statement.

“Having spent some time out of the AFL system, I'm pumped to be jumping back in and looking forward to meeting all the coaches and players at the Club in the coming weeks.

“Hopefully I can bring some experiences from my time at the Swans and outside of football to help the growth and development of the Bulldogs players.”

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 04: Alex Johnson of the Swans looks upfield during the round 20 AFL match between the Sydney Swans and the Collingwood Magpies at Sydney Cricket Ground on August 4, 2018 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Bulldogs football boss expressed his pleasure in having Johnson join the club's coaching group.

“Bringing in a quality person like Alex into our program will only further benefit our players and their development,” Grant said.

“Alex faced a lot of adversity during his playing days through injury and will be able to bring his learnings from those experiences into our program.

Johnson's arrival comes after the recent departures of Travis Varcoe, Rohan Smith and Marc Webb following the 2023 season.