Esava Ratugolea in action during the R3 clash between Geelong and Collingwood on April 2, 2022. Picture: Getty Images

GEELONG list manager Andrew Mackie has confirmed Esava Ratugolea and the Cats are mapping out where his future lies, with several clubs reportedly interested in his services.

Since debuting in 2018, Ratugolea has been a semi-regular for the Cats, playing 59 games over a stretch of five seasons in a myriad of different roles – primarily up forward.

However, Ratugolea was starved of opportunities in the Cats' run to the premiership this year, featuring only four times despite showing promising signs in the VFL as a key defender.

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When speaking to media on Monday, Mackie emphatically shot down any suggestions the contracted tall would be traded this off-season, stating the club "love him".

However, when speaking to Continental Tyres AFL Trade Radio on Tuesday, the Cats list manager was more open to the idea of the 24-year-old potentially looking for opportunities elsewhere, but said the club is still keen to retain his services.

Esava Ratugolea in action for Geelong against Box Hill in round 21 of the VFL season on August 13, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

"Esava is an interesting one," Mackie said.

"We've put games into Sav. He's been a big part of our succession plan forward of the footy albeit throughout the year, as a bit of a circuit breaker, we threw him behind the ball and he showed some really good signs as a key back.

"Clearly, blokes like Sav, six years into the system, just want to start playing footy and we've had that discussion with him, and we continue to try to map that out how that would look for him.

"He's a contracted player and no doubt the coach does love him, we love him, but totally understand he's trying to work out where he's going to play his footy. We're pretty clear on how that looks."

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Interest in Ratugolea is nothing new according to Mackie, who made clear clubs have been after him for quite some time.

"There is interest in him, but there has been for five years," he added.

"With the attributes that he has and the size that he is, those guys are few and far between, hence the reason why we'd love to keep him."

Meanwhile, Mackie confirmed young Magpie Ollie Henry wants to head down the highway to join his brother Jack at Kardinia Park next season, as reported by last month.

Oliver Henry kicks the ball during Collingwood's clash with Melbourne in round 13, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

Mackie said there was "work to do" to secure both Henry and wantaway Greater Western Sydney midfielder Tanner Bruhn, who also wants to join the Cats.

"Yeah, he (Henry) wants to come down and play for Geelong," Mackie said.

"It sort of popped up late that one. We were aware he was out of contract but we didn't actively pursue it or knock the door down to his manager. Given he's a second-year player, it's not something we tend to do.

"Clearly his brother plays down here and we're aware of the situation. By the end of the year, albeit even if it was a couple of weeks ago, we were aware that he would be keen to get down here.

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"Am I confident? It's hard to say. The common value for these guys where there's still a lot of projection involved in their playing is tough, but we sat down with Collingwood yesterday and we'll do that again and try and work through.

"We're not sitting on our hands with any of the trades that we want to do, we're trying to be active to make sure those clubs do well out of it.

"There's still work to do with Tanner and Ollie I think. I had a good chat with (Giants football boss) Jase McCartney yesterday, he was really good.

Tanner Bruhn celebrates a goal during Greater Western Sydney's clash against North Melbourne in round 13, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

"But there's still work to do, like I mentioned with the Ollie discussions. Teams have got their values for players."

Mackie also believes the Cats will get an answer in the "next little while" as to whether Gold Coast's Jack Bowes will request a move to the Cats, as a number of clubs circle the 24-year-old.

"We've caught up with Jack and it was a really good catch up. We've been aware and talking to his management for a long time about where Jack's at and how he's going up north.

"We're looking forward to hearing where that lands. We'd love it to be us."

The Cats have also signalled their interest in former Bomber Conor McKenna, who is weighing up a return to the AFL after returning home to Ireland in 2020.

Conor McKenna in action for Essendon against Gold Coast in round 11, 2020. Picture: Getty Images

Mackie confirmed the club had held discussions with the 26-year-old throughout the year, with Geelong likely to rekindle conversations after parking them for the time being.

"We've spoken to (McKenna) throughout the year, albeit a while ago," Mackie conceded.

"We've got people in our footy club who have dealt with him in the past at Essendon, James Kelly being one of them, and were complimentary about Conor.

"We've had a discussion about him, he can come on as a rookie list player, so that's attractive.

"There hasn't been much discussed about Conor for a little while. We have spoken throughout the year (and) I'm sure we'll pick up that conversation with where he's at and what he's thinking."