With the bitter disappointment that was their 2020 AFL season still fresh, the Essendon Bombers are already at the centre of numerous trade rumours.
After a promising start, the Bombers’ season slipped away from them alarmingly quickly thanks to a torrid run of form in the second half of the year which saw them slip out of finals contention entirely.
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After a series of high profile moves in off-seasons past, the 6-10 Bombers were only good enough for 13th on the ladder.
Another mediocre season has kicked off the latest round of speculation over the future of star key forward Joe Daniher already reaching a fever pitch.
The injury-prone goalkicker has only played 15 games over the prior three seasons, but pundits believe the Brisbane Lions have thrown their hat into the ring after a rumoured deal between the Bombers and Sydney Swans fell never eventuated.
“I think we all think Joe Daniher is on the move,” Veteran AFL reporter Sam Edmund told SEN on Wednesday.
“Is it Brisbane or is it Sydney? Depends on who you speak to, but the latest scuttlebutt has him touring the Brisbane Lions facilities very, very soon.
“It’s always been a lifestyle decision for Joe Daniher and I wonder what he will do going forward. His currency has certainly changed from last year.
“That first game back was unbelievable and we all came swooning but he’s come back to the pack since then.
“But if he can get himself fit and firing, a full pre-season and a happy state of mind, who knows what is possible.”
Essendon forward Orazio Fantasia linked to SA move
Joe Daniher isn’t the only Bombers star to once again find themselves at the centre of trade rumours, with small forward Orazio Fantasia also reportedly looking elsewhere.
The Bombers re-signed Fantasia in 2019 after the livewire goalkicker mulled a potential move to Port Adelaide - but word is that the 25-year-old is still keen to move to South Australia.
After an injury-riddled 2020 season in which Fantasia played just seven games, AFL.com.au reported he is undergoing independent medical testing ahead of a potential switch to either the Power or the Adelaide Crows.
Fantasia isn’t the only veteran Bomber to reportedly be considering leaving the club.
Veteran pair Michael Hurley and Cale Hooker are believed to be unhappy with the Bombers after the retiring Tom Bellchambers was denied a farewell game, while former free agent signing Adam Saad is also yet to resign with the club.