JOSH Caddy will play for Geelong next year, after Gold Coast and the Cats yesterday agreed to a deal that will send the young midfielder home to Victoria.
While the finer details of the deal have not been confirmed, the clubs have agreed that Gold Coast will be given the first-round compensation pick Geelong received following Gary Ablett's departure two years ago.
That pick, which will remain tied to where the Cats finish on the ladder, has not yet been activated by Geelong and may be used by the Suns in the 2013 or 2014 drafts.
The clubs will also exchange later draft picks, with those picks to be confirmed in the trade period. Geelong is still trying to trade for North Melbourne's Hamish McIntosh while St Kilda is trying to prise young ruckman Tom Hickey from the Suns.
Caddy, who unsuccessfully sought a move to Essendon this time last year, played 22 games this season after struggling through his first year with a foot injury. The former No. 7 draft pick has signed a three-year deal with the Cats.
''Josh is really excited. He's looking forward to moving down to Geelong, to being part of a really strong club, and he's relieved and excited that it's over,'' said Caddy's manager Peter Lenton.
The Cats yesterday moved midfielder Jesse Stringer onto their senior list, with a two-year contract, given they needed to either upgrade the third-year rookie or release him.
Stringer was banned for most of last season after he allegedly assaulted a woman in the Geelong suburb of Grovedale in June. But Geelong football manager, Neil Balme said his promotion was an easy decision.
''We had to either let him go or elevate him and we made a decision that we think that he deserves a chance,'' Balme said. ''He's been playing pretty good footy for us.
''He's one of those good midfield players. He has shown that he can play at an AFL level and has obviously has been pretty good at VFL level.''
The Cats, also linked to Melbourne free agent Jared Rivers, are facing some difficult decisions regarding the remaining rookies, with Josh Walker, George Burbury, Cameron Eardley, Jackson Sheringham and Jonathan Simpkin all having completed their second year.
Second-year rookies not offered a spot on the senior list become unrestricted agents able to walk to the club of their choice, with Burbury attracting attention from teams.
The retirements of Matthew Scarlett, David Wojcinski and Simon Hogan, as well as Shannon Byrnes' move to Melbourne has helped create some room on the list, with uncontracted defender Tom Gillies under pressure to secure a new deal.
Meanwhile, Brisbane has offered Melbourne midfielder Brent Moloney, a restricted free agent who quit the Demons last month, a two-year deal to move north.
The 28-year-old, Melbourne's best and fairest winner in 2011, will join the Lions by the end of the week if he passes a medical examination. The Demons made it clear they are not planning to match any offer for him.
With JON PIERIK, JARED LYNCH