Bomber Daniher on verge of joining Lions

Oliver Caffrey
·2-min read

After more than a year of wanting out of Essendon, Joe Daniher's exit from the Bombers is on the verge of being rubber-stamped.

The key forward is expected to become a Brisbane Lions player on Friday when the AFL's free agency period begins.

The Lions are hoping their offer for the restricted free agent won't be matched by Essendon and his transfer north will happen without a trade.

"All we can do is want to put the forms in. We'd like to think (Daniher) would get through without being challenged," Lions football boss David Noble said.

The Bombers want a first-round compensation pick for the injury-hit Daniher, who has kicked 191 goals for the club in 108 games, but has played just 15 matches in the past three seasons.

Even if an early draft pick isn't forthcoming, Essendon is considering cutting ties with the 26-year-old immediately and focusing their attention on other trades.

A father-son pick for the Bombers in 2012, Daniher requested a trade to the Sydney Swans last year while still contracted with Essendon, but a deal fell through.

Essendon shape as a key player in the free agency and trade periods, with dashing defender Adam Saad (Carlton) and forward Orazio Fantasia (Port Adelaide) also after new homes.

But the Bombers could save face by trading in Western Bulldogs premiership midfielder Josh Dunkley and Greater Western Sydney youngster Jye Caldwell.

Despite being contracted for another two years, Dunkley is eager to join the Bombers.

It shapes as one of the more complicated moves of the off-season, with the Dogs desperate to retain the 23-year-old who has played 78 games for the club.

The trade period doesn't begin until next Wednesday, but Geelong's move for star GWS forward Jeremy Cameron could officially kick off on Friday.

Last year's Coleman medallist is adamant on joining the Cats after 171 games with the Giants.

But as a restricted free agent, the Giants are determined to match any deal Geelong puts to Cameron as they seek maximum compensation for a player who has led the club's goal-kicking in all nine seasons since entering the AFL in 2012.