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Why a long-term deal for Saints target Crouch is “extremely risky”


Adelaide midfielder Brad Crouch wants to join St Kilda after exercising his right as a restricted free agent.

It’s understood the Saints will offer Crouch a long-term contract with the Crows having the option to match the bid and force a trade.

Garry Lyon told SEN Breakfast last week that the terms of the deal could land Adelaide pick No.2 in this year’s draft in a compensation package that includes Jimmy Webster and Luke Dunstan.

Kane Cornes says it’s “extremely risky” to offer Crouch a five-year deal given he has missed a lot of football because of injury.

“There’s no doubt they (St Kilda) got found out against Richmond in the midfield in that final, so the logical choice would be to bolster the midfield,” Cornes told AFL Trade Radio’s The Early Trade.

“Any time you can get a free agent it’s attractive … unless the Crows are going to match them.

“I’m a little bit surprised of the term of the deal – I think it’s extremely risky to give Brad Crouch five years for a number of reasons, mostly because he’s averaged 11 games over eight seasons.

“His body just continually lets him down. Is part of that the way that Brad prepares himself? Probably. Is he as fit as he could be? Just observing him, absolutely not.

“Whether his off-field indiscretion recently is a wakeup call for him to maximise his talent, but he’s not a player I would be giving five years to.

“In fact, there’s not many players in the competition I’d give five years to.”

St Kilda list boss James Gallagher confirmed the club has made an offer to Crouch but didn’t go into the specifics of the deal.

“I’m not sure what the compensation will look like for the Crows,” Gallagher told AFL Trade Radio’s Trade Mornings.

“We’ve put forward what we think is a really fair deal for Brad taking all things into consideration.

“We’re still working through the finer points of that with his management. You’ll get a reasonable idea of what the deal looks like when the compensation is announced.

“I’m not going to talk about the specifics of it (the deal).”

Crouch, 26, has played 95 games for the Crows.

St Kilda

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