Magpies unsure about Hurley’s AFL plans

Collingwood have made their pitch to Michael Hurley, now they join several AFL clubs in waiting for the banned Essendon defender’s decision.

Hurley is contracted to the Bombers for the 2017 season but has become the most in-demand player on the market.

The Magpies this week followed the likes of Western Bulldogs and St Kilda in going public with their desire to sign Hurley.

Several other clubs are also interested in the 26-year-old.

There remains a chance the disillusioned defender will recommit to the Bombers, having skipped this season as part of doping sanctions.

“He’s got a decision to make. He’s had a bit of think time. I’m sure we’ll become more aware of that over the coming weeks,” Buckley said on Tuesday.

“We’re really sensitive and understanding of the position he finds himself in with his current club.

“We’re really keen on him .. he hasn’t said no.

“The industry is saying that he’s having a look, considering his future.”

Adam Treloar and James Aish were both traded to Collingwood last year after nominating it as their club of choice, with the young midfielders impressed by a range of factors.

Buckley didn’t reveal what carrots the Magpies used while selling the club to Hurley’s manager Paul Connors.

“We presented a case to his management about why Collingwood could fit the bill for him,” he said.

“As most players do in this era, they make a decision on where they see the best fit. Some of it will be financial, some of it will be a chance to have success on field.

“It’s up to the individual to work out what mix he’s looking for.”

The Magpies offloaded a future first-round draft pick to secure Treloar in 2015, with Buckley conceding that will make it harder to agree on a suitable trade for Hurley.

“You’ve got to give to get,” he said.

“There’s sensitivities around that, we value all of our players but our job is to give the club the best chance of success.

“We want the best talent to come to us.”

Bombers coach John Worsfold has expressed confidence throughout the year that Hurley will recommit, saying last week he hadn’t even contemplated a potential trade.

Essendon midfielder David Zaharakis, who has played alongside Hurley since they were children, is unsure of the backman’s plans.

“Hopefully he makes a decision in the next one or two weeks” Zaharakis told radio station RSN927.

“It is difficult, you don’t want to put pressure on.

“He’s loyal to his friends .. I hope he’s at the footy club next year, but who knows?”

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