CLUBS should be allowed to trade players to another club without their consent, according to a majority of senior coaches.
In AFL.com.au's exclusive anonymous survey of the League's senior coaches, 86 per cent of the 15 coaches surveyed were in favour of clubs being able to trade players without their permission.
Of those, one said that it should only be allowed after a player has served a certain amount of years in the competition, while another agreed with the concept but only for players above a certain pay bracket.
COACHES SURVEY MVP, risers, sliders, flag tips and more
Only one of the coaches surveyed was against the idea, while another said it depended on the free agency rules.
While applicable in other worldwide sports, the AFL has always required player consent before a trade is completed – even if a player is out of contract. The AFL Players' Association has also been strongly opposed to the idea.
The survey asked coaches about a range of player movement topics, including whether clubs should receive compensation picks for losing players under free agency.
Three coaches said they were against compensation picks, while three others said they should only come for players who leave as restricted free agents. One said that compensation should only apply for unrestricted free agents, while another eight coaches supported the current system.
The NAB AFL Mid-Season Draft will return this year and it had the support of 73 per cent of coaches, while they were also quizzed on the ideal list size after last year's cuts.
Thoughts were varied amongst the senior coaching on the right number, with a range of ideas put forward.
While four suggested it should be kept at the same number, one said 2-4 players could be added as "the more players we have on AFL lists the better".
Another said that it couldn't be any smaller because "it will affect the ability of clubs to train properly" while another coach said, "there is not a good enough feeder system underneath to develop players if we have smaller lists".
Others suggested larger lists, with one saying a primary list of 35 players but having 10 supplementary players at state league "who can work and develop careers away from the game as well". Suggested increases ranged from 40 players on the senior list to a total of 55 players on a list, while the smallest ideal number according to a coach was 31.
All coaches surveyed said they have "a bit" of a say in their club's draft selections.