How Collingwood can afford Tom Lynch
COLLINGWOOD can back-end a lucrative long-term contract to fit superstar free agent Tom Lynch into the Magpies' tight salary cap.
The Magpies are operating near 100 per cent of their cap, but will have more flexibility to pay Lynch bigger dollars in the back half of a new contract from 2020.
That is when the bulk of the Pies' superstar midfielders' current deals expire including five-time best and fairest winner Scott Pendlebury (2020), Steele Sidebottom and Adam Treloar (2021).
Highly-paid recruits Daniel Wells (2019) and Chris Mayne (2020) are also off-contract over the next two seasons, potentially helping clear-out almost another $1 million in the club's cap.
Lynch, from Sorrento, is weighing up a move to either Collingwood, Richmond or Hawthorn to be closer to family and increased prospects of premiership success.
While it was initially feared Collingwood may not be able to afford the Suns' co-captain, the Herald Sun understands the Pies are currently content with the cap situation under respected list boss Ned Guy.
Collingwood president Eddie McGuire yesterday said Lynch's departure could actually enhance the besieged Suns' request for emergency draft assistance.
"It gives the Gold Coast then an opportunity to go to the AFL and say 'listen this is what is happening, see, see, see, now let's do something'," McGuire said on Triple M.
"Sometimes you have to prove the point, unfortunately, before people make a decision."
Lynch is expected to fly to Queensland to meet with Suns' chiefs once his knee fully recovers from season-ending surgery over the next week.
Guy's visit comes less than a fortnight after senior coach Nathan Buckley confirmed he has also met with the 25-year-old about a move to the Holden Centre.
Collingwood is also working to finalise deals for Darcy Moore, injury-hit forward Jamie Elliott and livewire Alex Fasolo, after completing Jordan De Goey's priority deal.
Gold Coast senior coach Stuart Dew yesterday said he had no problems with Collingwood meeting Lynch twice, despite being the Suns' current captain.
"From a footy club point of view, it's the system of AFL," Dew said.
"There's free agency, people, if they want to explore that, need to meet.
"Is it just managers meeting, is it list managers, is it the player meeting, are they having a coffee, jumping fences? Whatever it is, we're pretty open to what the situation is."
The Suns are set to receive pick No. 3 in free agency compensation for Lynch's departure, giving the club the chance to recruit highly-talented South Australian pair Jack Lukosius and Izak Rankine inside the top-three.
Carlton could swoop on Geelong Falcons' midfielder Sam Walsh at No.1.
Dew said the Suns still had some say on Lynch's future.
"It's certainly not all on Tom's terms," Dew said.
"We've been in constant dialogue with Tom and his manager and I think when the time is right we'll move forward one way or the other.
"There's options that we have.
"Now is that; he's a free restricted free agent, is it matching, is it he decides to stay, he decides he wants to explore, which we know he's doing, I think that time will come.
"Right now his next appointment is with his surgeon to get cleared to come back and then we'll confront that then."
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