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Cats Kelly Demands

Geelong has set its asking price for Tim Kelly.  - Geelong Cats,Tim Kelly
Geelong has set its asking price for Tim Kelly.

GEELONG has demanded at least a top-10 draft pick for Tim Kelly if the star midfielder is to return home to a WA club.

Twelve months after securing Kelly with the 24th pick in last year's NAB AFL Draft, the Cats have declared they want an "exceptional deal".

The 24-year-old had a brilliant debut season for the Cats where he finished equal second in the club's best and fairest and polled 13 votes in the Brownlow Medal.

Kelly has declared he wants to join reigning premiers West Coast for personal reasons, but after discussions with the Eagles and Fremantle on the opening day of the NAB AFL Trade Period, Cats list manager Stephen Wells said it would take a lot for the deal to get done.

"His value's increased enormously and it's going to have to be an exceptional deal for us to even consider it," Wells told NAB AFL Trade Radio on Monday.

"Definitely he's worth a top-10 pick, I would've thought, and perhaps more.

"Our intention at the moment, unless we're totally satisfied, is he will be playing for us in 2019."

The Eagles will have to get creative, and perhaps bring in a third club, to satisfy the Cats, given their first pick in the draft isn't until No.21 overall, with Gold Coast having received pick three as compensation for losing free agent Tom Lynch to Richmond.

The Dockers are better placed to offer their first-round pick, currently sitting at No.6.

"Well, home's home, that's the reason he wants to go and play in WA at the moment," Wells said.

"To us, (the Dockers) would make sense.

"Tim's manager has made it clear that the preference is West Coast Eagles at this time.

"Nothing's changed since (Kelly's manager) Anthony Van Der Wielen spoke to us and publicly last week."

Wells said he didn't take Kelly's decision to request a trade 12 months after being drafted personally.

"It's not as if he's a player that's dis-satisfied with his contract or the opportunities he's getting at our club, it's purely for an opportunity to get closer to his family," Wells said.

"What it does do though is throw out some of our forward planning a bit.

"When we draft players, we like them all to come on and be around the place for five to 10 years.

"If we happen to lose Tim after one year, certainly that throws out a bit of planning and succession plans in terms of being a successful club for a long time."

Meanwhile, Wells was very confident the Cats would get a deal done for Sydney forward Gary Rohan.

The Cats made two moves on the opening day of trade period – acquiring SANFL forward Nathan Kreuger from Carlton in exchange for pick 42, that was secured from Brisbane in as part of the trade for Lincoln McCarthy.

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs