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Clubs set to spend up big under new TPP system

Player payments changes mean cashed-up Victorian clubs are in a good position to chase Adam Treloar. Picture: Getty Images

TRADE period will have extra impetus this season, with at least nine AFL clubs understood to be in a position to spend above the salary cap because of the AFL's new Total Player Payments (TPP) banking system.

The new rule allows clubs who have spent under 100 per cent of the cap in the past two seasons to spend up to a maximum of five per cent over it in 2016.

With the cap of $10.071 million, the rule means clubs that qualify and are able to afford the extra money will potentially have an extra $500,000 to spend on players, although that figure represents the maximum amount.

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AFL.com.au understands Richmond and St Kilda are among the clubs in the position to take advantage of the new rule that was introduced as part of the AFL's competitive balance policy.

Melbourne stated earlier in the season it could at least spend 100 per cent of the cap depending on whom it recruited and it has spent under the maximum in recent seasons and the Brisbane Lions have room in their cap to attract key position players.

The banking system idea was introduced to give struggling clubs a better chance to compete with clubs near the top of the ladder who have the advantage of being able to sell the potential for immediate success in the bid for talent.

Clubs can pay over the salary cap an equivalent amount to what they may have underspent in 2013 and 2014, if they can afford to do so and want to introduce flexibility in the way they manage their player payments.

There is a suspicion that top end talent will be the beneficiaries of the extra spend as clubs battle to secure out of contract stars.

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Clubs spend closer to 50 per cent of their total cap on their top 10 paid players with the determination to attract and retain such players competitive. 

One player who has attracted interest among Victorian clubs is talented Greater Western Sydney midfielder Adam Treloar.

Collingwood, Richmond and North Melbourne are three clubs believed to be considering making attractive long-term offers to the 22-year-old, who has played 75 games with the Giants. 

Greater Western Sydney is still able to spend between $520,000-$880,000 but many of its other re-signings remain contingent on Treloar's decision. 

Adelaide's Patrick Dangerfield heads a list of unsigned free agents that includes the Brisbane Lion Matthew Leuenberger, Melbourne's Col Garland, and West Coast's Scott Selwood.

There are also a raft of big name players such as Melbourne's Jeremy Howe, Sydney Swan Lewis Jetta and Carlton's Lachie Henderson that remain unsigned.

The banking system, along with the introduction of the trading of future draft picks has industry sources predicting an active trade period.