Maligned Melbourne forward Jack Watts wants to stay with the Demons but admits he can’t be completely sure that will happen.
Watts is contracted for next season but speculation over his future has been rekindled after another campaign where he struggled to live up to the potential that led to him being taken first overall at the 2008 draft.
The 24-year-old’s patchy form saw him dropped back to the VFL this season, with his final-round omission from the team to play Greater Western Sydney increasing speculation that Melbourne would listen to trade offers for him, or that he would seek a fresh start elsewhere.
“I don’t think anyone can be 100 per cent confident but I certainly hope so,” Watts replied on Tuesday, when asked if he would be at the club next year.
“I see a really strong year next year for the Dees and I’d love to be a part of it.
“I’ve got things I need to improve on to keep up, so I’ll go away in the off-season and work on those things and hopefully have a really good year.”
On Monday, coach Paul Roos was asked directly if Watts was a required player and would only say that there were no guarantees for any player as the club seeks to improve its list.
Watts admitted he was disappointed to get dropped in round 23 but said that Roos had given him clear feedback on the move.
“It was pretty simple – it was that my contested stuff wasn’t quite there in the three or four weeks leading into it,” he said.
“I’ve got to go and improve that in this off-season – I’m confident I can do that and work my way back (into the side).
“Getting dropped in the last round frustrated that desire because you want to go out and prove something and you don’t get the chance to do that when you miss out on the last game.
“But that can fuel this off-season and going into 2016.” Watts said that he’s been given no indication that his days at the club are numbered.
“We’ve had our exit interviews and it all went very well,” he said.
“I think it was a good year (also) a bit of a frustrating year but we definitely took some steps forward as a team.
“Next year’s pretty exciting.”