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GOLD Coast midfielder Harley Bennell has nominated Fremantle as his preferred new club, opening the way for the two clubs to start serious trade negotiations for 2010's No.2 draft pick.

The Suns put Bennell up for trade early last month after another off-field indiscretion finally exhausted the club's patience with the prodigiously talented but wayward midfielder. 

Tigers pull out of Harley race

Bennell had been widely expected to seek a trade to the Dockers after expressing a desire to return home to Western Australia.

AFL.com.au has confirmed that Bennell has officially nominated Fremantle as his preferred destination, with Dockers reportedly offering him a three-year deal.

Bennell attracted interest from other clubs, particularly Richmond, but the Tigers pulled out of the race after meeting with the midfielder last week. 

The trade negotiations between the Suns and Dockers should be fascinating.

On talent alone, the 23-year-old, who is contracted to the Suns until the end of 2017, could have fetched up to two early draft picks or a star player for the Suns.

But his off-field history undoubtedly stopped some clubs from pursuing him, and should dilute the deal the Dockers need to offer to satisfy the Suns.