Clark to start talks with Fremantle
Departed Brisbane Lions big man Mitch Clark has arrived back in his home state to commence official negotiations with Fremantle to continue his AFL career at the Dockers.
Clark, 23, arrived back into Perth at midnight on Wednesday where he was met by a local television crew searching for news of his plans to join the struggling Dockers.
Clark is headed for Fremantle as a trouble-shooting key forward and back-up ruckman to support champion big man Aaron Sandilands.
He is expected to play predominantly as a prime lead-up marking tall forward and has been earmarked by Dockers coach Mark Harvey as his side’s crucial cog to potentially engineer a premiership combination within the next two seasons.
Clark was originally taken to Brisbane from WA back in 2005 as the Lions prized first choice and pick number nine overall in the national draft.
He is considered a big loss to the Lions, but a saviour in Fremantle’s ambitious plans to possibly win a title within the next two to three seasons with a maturing playing list.
Clark told Lions coach Michael Voss less than a week ago that he wanted to be traded after six seasons and 82 games with Brisbane.
He has meetings scheduled with Fremantle officials early next week to negotiate a contract, his initial length of time to play with the Dockers and early indications of just how his trade will be handled.
The Lions are expected to ask for an early draft pick and probably at least another player in return for Clark in any trade negotiation.
Clark rocked Voss with his decision to leave Brisbane early this month after an impressive 2011 season when the versatile big man played 17 games and booted the club-best 27 goals.
He was a borderline All-Australian in 2009 when he played 24 games, including two finals and finished third in Brisbane’s fairest-and-best behind Lions legends Jonathan Brown as winner and Simon Black, who was second.