Trending topics

Select your station

We'll remember your choice for next time

Essendon defender’s trade request confirmed as Port shows interest in fringe ruckman


Brandon Zerk-Thatcher wants out at Essendon and is keen to join Port Adelaide.

The 25-year-old defender, who played 22 games under Brad Scott in 2023, has reportedly told the Bombers he would like to get to Alberton this trade period.

The Sturt product turned down a three-year contract offer from the Dons and would prefer to return home to South Australia.

SEN’s Sam Edmund provided some further context around Zerk-Thatcher’s trade request.

“He had a three-year deal to stay at Essendon. He didn’t sign it and as of now he’s turned his back on it,” Edmund said on SEN’s Whateley.

“South Australia is home for him, he’s got family links there, a family pull of course. So he wants to play, officially now, for the Port Adelaide Football Club.

“Drafted by the Bombers in 2017, 51 games, 22 this season, a regular part of Brad Scott’s mix. Not anymore.”

After Geelong’s Esava Ratugolea also requested a trade to the Power, the next question is how do they get the deals done considering they currently own picks 37 and 43.

Throw Melbourne ruckman Brodie Grundy into the mix, and it presents as a great challenge for the Power.

“To think they want Brodie Grundy as well, that’s the other piece of the pie,” added Edmund.

“There’s lots to play out here as far as Port Adelaide go and handling the picks, which future picks may or not be involved, what happens with Scott Lycett and players who may leave. That’s all to play out.

“But history says you find a way. You don’t pursue players like this unless you find a way. Whether they can satisfy a club like Essendon for Brandon Zerk-Thatcher, who history says they will dig in for, remains to be seen.”

It is also understood that Port are showing interest in fringe Western Bulldogs ruckman Jordon Sweet.

The 25-year-old has played just 11 AFL games for the Dogs since being taken as a rookie in 2018 and is seeking further senior opportunities.

Sweet is a North Adelaide product who could also be set to return home, depending on what happens with Grundy who is also on the radar of the Sydney Swans.

“Jordon Sweet looks likely to Port Adelaide,” Edmund said further.

“They’ve put an offer to the fringe Dogs ruckman. He’s had a deal on the table from the Dogs for a lot of this year, but hasn’t signed it.

“His VFL campaign ended at the weekend. He didn’t request a trade, I’m told, in his exit meeting yesterday and the offer from Port Adelaide obviously isn’t huge.

“But he appears likely to pursue a change of scene. I’d guess, and it’s only a guess, that he’s waiting for Grundy to formalise his decision.

“If Grundy goes to Port Think you can put a line through it, but given we think Grundy is going to join Sydney, I think it’s highly likely that Jordon Sweet joins Port Adelaide.”

Sweet did not feature at AFL level at all in 2023 with All-Australian Tim English holding down the number one ruck spot at the Whitten Oval.

Listen to Edmund’s Trade Bell update below:

Port Adelaide Essendon Western Bulldogs

More in AFL