Dion Prestia may have played his last game for Gold Coast after the midfielder was ruled out for the rest of the AFL season due to a knee injury.
The 23-year-old, who is off contract at the end of the year, had surgery on his knee in Melbourne on Tuesday afternoon after scans.
“He saw the surgeon yesterday who recommended he go in straight away,” Suns football boss Marcus Ashcroft said on the club’s website.
“There’s a little more damage than first thought so hell unfortunately miss the rest of this season.”
Prestia, taken with pick No.9 in the 2012 national draft, is one of the most sought-after names of the upcoming trade window.
The Melburnian is reported to want a move back to his home town, with Carlton the latest club linked with a move for the hard-running midfielder.
Melbourne, Richmond and Hawthorn have all reportedly registered interest in Prestia, who could command an annual salary of $750,000 should a bidding war eventuate.
The Gold Coast foundation player said earlier in the year he would wait until after the mid-season bye to decide his future.
This setback could influence his value, given he also missed 14 weeks of the 2015 season with another knee injury.
Prestia had been carrying the problem for weeks but took a knock in the Suns’ win over Brisbane two weeks ago – the same day Gary Ablett and Michael Rischitelli both suffered season-ending injuries, leaving Gold Coast with a shortage of midfield options.
Ablett is also in Melbourne after seeking a second medical opinion on his shoulder and will make a call on his injury by the end of the week, while Rischitelli (knee) will go under the knife on Friday.
Jaegar O’Meara will also be missing from the club’s round-18 match with Fremantle after failing to complete a reserves match on the weekend.
“It’s a no risk policy,” Ashcroft said.
“He was a bit tight in his hamstring and calf. That will rule him out of senior selection this weekend.”
In better news for the beleaguered club, Matt Rosa will return after three weeks off with a hamstring strain.