Freo still Clark’s preference
Brisbane Lions forward Mitch Clark is still on track to move to his preferred club Fremantle by the end of Trade Week, despite fielding what his manager described as an “outstanding” offer from Melbourne late on Wednesday.
Fremantle, which holds selections No.16 and No.20 in this year’s NAB AFL Draft, has been the frontrunner to secure Clark from the Lions, but the clubs are yet to agree on a satisfactory trade.
Brisbane Lions list manager Rob Kerr said on Thursday that he was surprised Fremantle was yet to table a formal offer for Clark.
Melbourne could potentially trump Fremantle with its pick No.12 in this year’s Draft, with the Demons also holding compensation picks for losing midfielder Tom Scully to GWS.
However, Young maintained that his client’s preference was to return to his native Western Australia and play with Fremantle.
He said any deal was now likely to go down to Monday’s 2pm AEDT deadline.
“Melbourne have a lot of things to offer and Fremantle has things to offer,” Young told afl.com.au’s Trade Week Radio on Thursday.
“It was just a balance of putting down on paper what were the positives and negatives of both offers. They’re both very good.
“The pitch from Melbourne was outstanding and he has to reflect on what’s been offered.”
Young said the Demons’ pitch came from list manager Tim Harrington late on Wednesday, adding that, “If you’re a Melbourne supporter, you’d be very happy with what they’re doing”.
However, he said Melbourne’s offer would not necessarily derail Fremantle’s chances of securing the 23-year-old.
“We haven’t asked them (Fremantle) to change anything they’ve offered Mitchell,” he said. “The offer was good in other aspects.
“We’ve been working with Fremantle since the end of the season to try and get a trade done.
“We’ve put a lot of energy into getting it done, so we’re hoping it will get done.”
Later on Thursday, Kerr added Clark was still in Brisbane but believed “the more likely outcome” was that he would go through with a trade rather than remain at the club, and admitted Melbourne’s pick-related offer was worth more than the one Fremantle put forward late on Thursday.
He also said Clark had been surprised by the interest from Melbourne, and denied there was a rift between the player and the Lions.
“Early on in the piece, it was clear he was fairly keen to move back to Western Australia, and I think he’s fairly conscious of his family connections over there and the like,” Kerr told 3AW’s Sports Today.
“There certainly hasn’t been any falling out with the club.
“We were asked to put an offer forward, we did and it perhaps didn’t meet the expectations they had.
“Fremantle had been in discussion with Mitch for some time but then Melbourne’s come forward with an offer that probably really does provide himself the opportunity to set himself up and really look after his family.
“I think he’s been a little taken aback with Melbourne’s late offer and the way they pitched it so he’s having to think his way through that.”
Kerr also said the Lions had inquired with Adelaide about Kurt Tippett and weren’t prepared to offer the hefty price the Crows said would get a trade done, while ruckman Ben Hudson remained “in the mix” to join the club for at least 12 months.
He also said talks with Greater Western Sydney about Luke Power had been “amicable” but the Clark deal had taken up the majority of their concentration so far.
Kerr confirmed fallen power forward Brendan Fevola would officially come off the Lions’ list at the first list lodgment on October 31, and there had been no interest in the two-time Coleman medallist during the trade period.