BRISBANE coach Craig Starcevich has taken aim at the latest and final round of expansion, saying the player movement and big offers was too difficult for existing clubs to counter.

Essendon, Hawthorn, Port Adelaide and Sydney will enter the competition next season, and have been very active in approaching players and making offers. has reported Ash Riddell and Ellie Blackburn are considering offers from the Swans, as is Bonnie Toogood with Hawthorn, while Kirsty Lamb and Izzy Huntington have interest from current AFLW clubs St Kilda and GWS respectively.

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The Lions were badly hit by expansion ahead of 2020, losing 11 players to opposition clubs, on top of the four that moved on the year prior.

"I sort of know we're going to be under the pump for Sign and Trade pretty quickly, and we definitely know there's four clubs hovering around," Starcevich said.

"No, I'm not going to say anything, because I'm going to get very cranky about that."


Despite that, Starcevich then followed up his own statement.

"We've been in the comp six years, and we went through, a couple of years ago, the big four-team expansion, and that was like, Jesus, we're down to 17 players. In hindsight, it did us a massive favour because we brought in O'Dwyer, Bodey, Davidson, Dawes, Hickie, you name it," Starcevich said.

"We had a good off-season there to bring them in, took us a year or two to get cranking, but we're ok now. If it's going to happen again now, that's fine to say the competition needs to expand and we need players going here and there, but it never helps us. It never helps us.

"Because we're the ones who put all the time and effort in developing players, developing relationships and then what do you do? Just go and pull the rug out from – it drives me frickin' mad.

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"I don't know if there's another way of doing it, but it drives me mad, because we run the team. We coach the team. We develop the players.

"I don't know what the answer is, but it absolutely drives me mad that big offers come in from clubs that aren't even in the comp, and they end up – the tail ends up wagging the dog.

"They make all the demands about how to get players. I've said too much. It's very disruptive. We're not the only club, whatever was reported yesterday about the Bulldogs, for example, jeez, come on."