Buddy Franklin could beat both Sydney and Brisbane as champion AFL star hints at possible RETIRE at current season’s end
- The two-time premiership winner’s nine-year mega-deal in Sydney ends this year
- The Swans hope to re-capture their champion, while Brisbane are interested
- Franklin has indicated that he could move his young family to the Gold Coast
- Now he has put contract talks on ice to hint that he may be preparing to retire
Dual AFL Prime Minister Lance ‘Buddy’ Franklin has given his strongest indication yet that he will retire at the end of the 2022 season and has suspended all contract talks until the completion of the finals.
The future of the 25-year-old star, who scored his 1,000th AFL goal earlier this season, has been a hot topic with his mega nine-year $10 million deal set to expire in late 2022.
Could Buddy Franklin Prepare to Say Goodbye to the AFL Forever at the End of the 2022 Season?
The Sydney Swans remain interested in extending his term in the Harbor City after the forward turned back the clock this season to send the Swans to the AFL top eight and a possible premiership tilt.
However, the Brisbane Lions have also been linked to the eight-time All-Australian legend with rumors that Franklin and his wife Jesinta Franklin are looking to make a move to the Gold Coast.
Franklin released a statement on the contract talks through his manager on Saturday morning, saying it will be a “family decision” in a strong indicator that retirement is on the table.
Franklin and his young family will reportedly move to the Gold Coast in late 2022
“At this stage, my contract talks have been paused so that I can fully concentrate on playing football. No further comment will be made until the season is over and I have made a decision about my future,” he said.
“At this stage, my contract talks have been paused so that I can fully concentrate on playing football,” he said.
“I’m not done yet and need time after the season to make a family decision about whether to continue playing next year.”
While Brisbane has been installed as a favorite to sign Franklin if he leaves the Swans and moves to Queensland, coach Chris Fagan also believes the four-time Coleman Medal winner is leaning towards retirement.
“I would have thought that if they move to Queensland, that might be an indication that Bud is going to retire from AFL football,” Fagan said.
“When it comes to moving them here, and. someone extends his hand from his camp and suggests that he still wants to play, then we as a football club would be remiss not to start talking to him.
Franklin has turned back the clock this season and has been a major reason they are playing finals
“As far as I’m concerned, he’s a Sydney Swans player, and if that happened, it would happen when the season is over.
“My last communication with him was a text message I sent him when he scored his 1000th (AFL) goal four months ago.
“I don’t know what will happen in the future, but as I see it now, if he moves to Queensland to live there, I would suggest that he retire.”
A turning point for Lance Franklin and his family could spell the end of his award-winning AFL career
Swans CEO Tom Harley said on Thursday that Brisbane Lions’ interest was ‘news for me’ and he remains optimistic the club can re-sign their superstar.
‘There is nothing to announce, but at the same time there is nothing unpleasant’ [on Franklin’s future]said Harley on 3AW.
“There is no rush from our point of view and no rush from his point of view.
“Everything is going well at the moment.”