Lance Franklin is contracted to be paid close to $1.5 million in the eighth year of his ground-breaking nine-year contract, with the superstar forward's payments due to peak in the seventh and eighth seasons.
Lance Franklin gets hero's welcome
Sydney Swans recruit Lance Franklin was mobbed by fans outside his new club after he made his first press appearance wearing red and white.
Fairfax Media has learnt some details of Franklin's unprecedented contract, which sees him paid at the low end in the first two seasons of 2014 and 2015, when he receives about $700,000 a year, but it rises to around $1.2 million in the third season (2016) and remains at about $1.2 million in both years four (2017) and five (2018).
Franklin's remuneration then rises further in the sixth, seventh and eighth years, before dropping to roughly $1 million in the ninth and final year, by which stage Franklin will be 36.
The star forward is due $1.3 million in the sixth year (2019), $1.4 million in 2020 and is contracted to get close to $1.5 million - expected to be more than 10 per cent of the salary cap even then - in 2021, when he will be 35.
Overall, Franklin's deal is worth $10.2 million - slightly higher than the $10 million that has been widely reported.
His modest payments of $700,000 in both 2014 and 2015 appear timed to coincide with the hefty payments to Kurt Tippett, who was lured to the Swans on a long-term deal 12 months ago.
Two of Sydney's other highest paid players, Adam Goodes and Ryan O'Keefe, will have almost certainly retired by the third year of the Franklin deal, as it climbs by $500,000 and stays at the level for three years before increasing gradually until the eighth season.
While the drop from year eight to nine is substantial, Franklin's 2022 remuneration of about $1 million will still have him in the upper echelons of the AFL for player payments, even if the total player payments climbs by greater than expected percentages - an outcome that is largely dependent on what the AFL receives in the next broadcasting rights deal.
The most surprising elements of the contract are the amounts due in the sixth and especially the seventh and eighth years, given Franklin's age.
There was erroneous view from the AFL industry that Franklin's deal would peak in the middle years before trailing off dramatically in the last three seasons.
No one knows what proportion of the salary cap Franklin will be eating up in those latter four years, when he will be well past 30 and entitled to $5.2 million over the final four years.
The AFL is considered certain to greatly reduce or scrap the cost of living allowance of almost 10 per cent (roughly a $1 million) that Sydney receives, but Greater Western Sydney is likely to retain its similar cost of living allowance under a different name, such as an expansion allowance, for the coming years.
The AFL has confirmed that the Swans must include Franklin's contract terms in each of the nine years of the contract, irrespective of how long he plays.
The amounts would remain in those particular years even if they paid him a massive lump sum early.
The amounts reported include the additional services agreements - the capped marketing payments that clubs can make to players for appearances and work for sponsors and alike.