TWO YEARS have passed since Greater Western Sydney captain Callan Ward conceded to it would be impossible for the club to retain every potential star on its list.

Since that somewhat controversial burst of honesty from the skipper, Tom Boyd, Kristian Jaksch, Taylor Adams, Jonathan O'Rourke, Dom Tyson, Josh Bruce, Mark Whiley and Sam Frost have departed, among varying degrees of fanfare.

Plenty have stayed too, with Jeremy Cameron and Devon Smith the biggest names to recently re-sign.

But 2015 shapes as the most significant year yet on the retention front for the expansion club.

Will the Giants retain star out-of-contract quartet Dylan Shiel, Adam Treloar, Will Hoskin-Elliott and Stephen Coniglio?

Shiel stays coy on future

The general feeling is that all four are happy at the club but are in no hurry to re-commit as they weigh up their options.

Shiel is the most prominent of the four, given he possesses qualities all clubs yearn to see in their star midfielders.

Explosive pace from stoppages make him a hot prospect. understands Hawthorn, Richmond and Carlton have all expressed serious interest in Shiel – to be honest there wouldn't be a club that hasn't enquired – but he will not lead anyone on a merry dance.

When, or if, the time comes to talk, he is only expected to entertain offers from clubs he is genuinely contemplating joining.

The 22-year-old emerging star is studying, has settled in Sydney and the early performances of both the team and individual have been heartening enough to tilt sentiment towards him staying.

However industry sources suggest he could come with price tag of between $700,000 - $800,000 a year.

In his current form, his price is not getting any lower.

Giants re-sign Davis but sweat on young stars

The other complication is what clubs would need to trade in order to secure him, however as experienced football managers know, deals get done.

Adam Treloar, who shares Shiel's birthdate, has been linked most heavily with Collingwood but up to five Victorian clubs are believed to have made it clear they are keen on him.

Essendon, understood to be on the lookout for classy young midfielders, has cap space and will circle prospects with intent.

Great mates with Hoskin-Elliott, the two are said to be thick as thieves in Sydney and are certain to be watching the other's attitude to staying or going with interest.

Hoskin-Elliott is a unique player making valuing him a difficult prospect.

Coniglio, a West Australian, is an influential member of the group with deep links throughout the team.

Speculation during pre-season was that he might be enticed away from the club if he failed to win a permanent spot in the midfield.

However he has been impressive in the opening rounds demonstrating the talent that saw him such a highly rated junior.

The sensible approach Coniglio will take is to wait and see whether those opportunities continue, with him likely to be in a much better position to assess the situation later in the season.

Underpinning all this consideration is a strengthening Giants midfield boosted by Ryan Griffen's arrival.

Although the players' waiting game might be causing the Giants a few sleepless nights, it isn't necessarily a bad situation for the club.

If suitors sense their odds of getting a player to join their club are lengthening they will turn their attention to free agents or other out-of-contract stars.

Remember Patrick Dangerfield remains unsigned, as does Rory Sloane, James Aish and Scott Selwood. And the Gold Coast guns might be in contract but they certainly won't be left alone if the Suns struggle.

The market is much more fluid now than it was even 69 games ago when the Giants started, so all eyes are not trained on western Sydney as was expected two years ago.

The delay gives the Giants opportunities to assess which 30 players are most likely to take them forward and put all their eggs into keeping those players happy while discreetly reclassifying some young talent as trade bait.

Assessing fair value of solid, dependable players such as Tomas Bugg, Rhys Palmer, Matthew Buntine, Nathan Wilson and Jacob Townsend is important too.

Several insiders canvassed suggested re-signing the stars on short-term contracts might be the smart, and most likely, way forward for both player and club.

After all, the Giants have money, with expansion advantages giving them extra salary cap space, good facilities and a smart coach.

On the field, the Giants are making good progress but momentum depends on re-signing its talent.

The club is not saying much right now with a statement been basic and to the point:

"We won’t be providing a running commentary on player contracts. All our players at the Giants are happy and we expect them to be at the club long term."

A look at the ladder and the Giants’ best 22 at about round 12 however will tell us plenty.

Up until then Ward will keep wondering: are his talented teammates likely to stay?