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Bombers in chase for Goddard

Brendon Goddard: Bombers are keen.

Brendon Goddard: Bombers are keen. Photo: Sebastian Costanzo

ESSENDON is making a strong play for St Kilda's free agent Brendon Goddard and is well-positioned to snare the All-Australian if he opts to leave the Saints.

Sources have confirmed that the Dons have emerged as the major alternative club for Goddard and are prepared to offer a four-year contract. The Saints, thus far, have been willing to offer only a three-year deal, and their offer - made in the last few weeks of St Kilda's season - is thought to be below what Goddard would command from the Bombers.

Goddard's expiring three-year contract is estimated to average close to $550,000 per year.

If he was to leave for Essendon, he would certainly receive a significant increase.

While Fremantle also has an interest in Goddard, is coached by his former mentor Ross Lyon - under whom he flourished - and has the salary cap space, it is understood that the two-time All-Australian has a preference for remaining in Victoria. This puts the Bombers at the head of the pack if he is unable to come to terms with St Kilda or if the Saints decide not to match a rival club's bid.

Carlton, long speculated to have had an interest in Goddard, has ruled itself out of the running for the Saint, who is 27 and became a restricted free agent this year.

Goddard has expressed a wish to remain with the Saints and has even been touted as the next captain after Nick Riewoldt, but it is unclear how far the Saints will go if he receives a significantly better offer from another club. Obviously, any decision to go to another club such as Essendon would be based on an assessment of that club and its prospects, not simply money.

The Bombers might lose Angus Monfries to Port Adelaide via free agency and while they have repeatedly said that their priority is to retain players, they are capable of creating space in their salary cap, perhaps by list changes, to sign a significant player such as Goddard.

Goddard is by no means the only free agent or uncontracted player who the Bombers have shown an interest in as they seek to address their need for class and skill

around the ball. They were one of a number of clubs keen on Travis Boak before he re-committed to Port Adelaide.

Free agency is an attractive option for the Bombers, given that they will not be able to use their first draft pick (No. 10) for a trade, because that selection is certain to be used on boom recruit Joe Daniher under the bidding system for father-son drafts.

By using that first round pick, the Dons would need to trade a player to have any prospect of acquiring out-of-contract Victorian youngster Josh Caddy from the Gold Coast. The Bombers were aggressive in pursuing Caddy last year when he was still under contract.

Under the rules of free agency, the Saints would be compensated with a draft choice if they lost Goddard and did not sign a player of comparable worth and age as a free agent themselves. Goddard would likely deliver them a first-round pick (if they did not sign another high-calibre free agent themselves). St Kilda's first round pick is No. 12, which means it would probably receive pick 13 in the draft as compensation.

Clubs can also receive an end-of-first-round pick, a second-round pick or a third-round pick, depending on the contract and worth of the player.

Clubs that lose a player to free agency must take any compensation in the next draft.

The pick cannot be ''banked'' and used when it suits in later years.

19 comments so far

  • Watson and Goddard would go close to being the best midfield combo in the comp.

    Roger from strathmore
    Date and time
    September 10, 2012, 8:56AM
    • Dream big Roger, Goddard isn't even in the Saints best 3-4 midfielders, he's a decent back flanker. As for for Caddy, bombers have no chance… once again.

      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 9:33AM
    • hahaha! I wouldn't have thought so Roger, he's not even in the saints best 2 midfielders! Dal Santo/Hayes, Judd/Murphy, Swan/Pendlebury, Mitchell/Hodge, Thompson/Dangerfield, ...

      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 9:43AM
    • Dragit, the Caddy situation has nothing to do with how good a Goddard/Watson midfield would be. Both 2 of the best in close ball winners going around.

      On Caddy, the reality is that he has had a season worthy of a second round draft pick. thats based on stats, ouput and game influence. on that our second pick and and an established player maight get the deal across the line.

      Roger from strathmore
      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 9:45AM
    • …exactly why the bombers never get any deals done Rog… Offer up pick 29 and some old hack, while another club will give a first round pick, you guys will be left scratching your heads, again.
      It's not based on his stats from this year - it's his potential, he is a pick 7 and only 19 years old.

      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 10:03AM
    • i may be missing something here but which team would be offering their first rounder? the bloke hasnt been amazing in the 2 years he has played which would indicate he probably wont be a player worthy of pick 7. First round is a not going to be on the table from any club..

      Roger from strathmore
      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 11:00AM
    • Well, get ready to be shocked. He's only 19 & his current output is about double both Jobe and Brendons first few seasons. Unfortunately Tate Pears & your 2nd round pick isn't going to do it.

      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 11:29AM
    • Dont know why Ess wants to go down this path. 1) Four year deal makes him 31-32, totally out of his prime. 2) Agree we need a midfielder, but I cant recall Goddard being a midfielder, he is a utlity type player. 3) We need a midfielder that is about to absolutley tear it apart, ie Jack/Hannnebry, Gaff/Shuey, Mayne/Suban/Fyfe, Cotchin/Martin, 4) We need pace, Goddard is not quick. 5) Goddard is very undisciplined, we already have enough of those players. Ess needs to chase Caddy, I suggest a secound round pick with Pears and throw in Prismall, Dyson, Slattery, Davey & Colylier just because they list cloggers!

      Go Dons
      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 2:28PM
  • monfires - please sign with port adelaide, it will be win-win

    bomber fan
    Date and time
    September 10, 2012, 9:02AM
    • The Bombers have a plethora of talls, so a couple of those will be used to snare Caddy (+ a pick). They'll probably lose Monfries, but the compensatory pick will also come in handy. So to get Caddy and Goddard coming into the midfield, plus the emergence of young talent in Browne, Lee and Kavanagh (who all look promising), the Essendon midfield could look pretty damn good in a couple of years.

      Date and time
      September 10, 2012, 9:07AM

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