Exclusive: Buddy breaks silence
Watch our exclusive interview with Lance Franklin after a meeting with the AFL
Hawk forward Lance Franklin could join the Sydney Swans next year
THE SYDNEY Swans' audacious bid to sign Hawthorn superstar Lance Franklin is centred on a staggering nine-year contract worth $10 million.
The Swans have confirmed they have made an offer to Franklin's management and AFL.com.au understands the proposed deal covers the 2014-22 seasons, by the end of which Franklin would be 35.
It is understood the deal has been worked on for 12 months. It will be lodged officially with the AFL on Friday, under the terms of the free agency rules.
Following the revelation, the AFL released a statement
on Tuesday evening reminding the Swans that it was reviewing all club and player allowances, including the controversial 9.8 per cent cost-of-living allowance currently granted to the club and its neighbour, Greater Western Sydney.
"[The Swans] understand that they may need to accommodate this proposed contract in an environment in which the cost-of-living allowance may be altered or removed altogether," the statement said.
Also, the AFL said it would interview key officials involved in the Swans' proposed offer to Franklin as part of new compliance measures.
All proposed free agency deals will undergo the same scrutiny, AFL spokesman Patrick Keane said.
Given Franklin is a restricted free agent, Hawthorn will have to match both the term and amount of the Swans' offer to keep the two-time Coleman medallist.
If the Hawks match the Swans' offer, the Swans would be forced to trade to bring Franklin to the Harbour City.
In a statement released on Tuesday evening, Hawthorn said it had met with Franklin's management and acknowledged his desire to "explore his options under free agency".
"Hawthorn ... will continue to apply its established list management strategy that puts the needs and interests of the club first," the statement said
The only longer-term contract in recent memory is the 10-year deal the Brisbane Bears offered Alastair Lynch to entice him from Fitzroy at the end of 1993.
Lynch completed that contract and even extended his stay at the Gabba for a further season, retiring at the end of 2004 at 36.
However, few key-position players play into their mid-30s, making it highly likely Franklin's playing career would end before his contract.