Sydney small forward Ben McGlynn faces an uncertain future, with his latest premiership near-miss potentially doubling as an AFL swansong.
McGlynn, who was one of a handful of Swans to struggle on Saturday, has now come agonisingly close to winning a grand final on four occasions throughout his 171-game career.
The 31-year-old, who is uncontracted and not expected to be offered a new deal by the Swans, will soon find out if he has a chance to aim for elusive glory in 2017.
“I’m not sure yet. We’ll work that out as the weeks progress,” Swans coach John Longmire said, when asked about McGlynn after his side’s 22-point loss in the season decider.
Gun midfielder Josh Kennedy, who played alongside McGlynn at Hawthorn and likewise shifted to Sydney after the 2009 season, felt the pint-sized forward still had something to offer.
“He hasn’t declared his retirement and the club haven’t denied him next year’s contract,” Kennedy said.
“Fingers crossed he can get another crack, because it would be great.”
McGlynn was an established member of the Hawks’ side in 2007 but a knee injury meant he managed just three games the following year, when they won the flag.
A hamstring injury in week one of the 2012 finals then kept McGlynn on the sidelines for the Swans’ dramatic grand-final win over his former side.
McGlynn featured in both the 2014 and 2016 season deciders but tallied only nine disposals, five tackles and a behind on Saturday.
“I want to keep playing on, but if that’s not the case I’ll sit down with my wife and my manager and work out what’s best for me going forward,” McGlynn said last week, having spent a month in the reserves late in the regular season.
Tom Mitchell is another out-of-contract Sydney player who may have featured in his final game for the club, albeit for a vastly different reason. Mitchell, who capped an impressive season with 26 disposals, two goals and 13 tackles in the grand final, is expected to request a trade and sign a lucrative deal with Hawthorn.
The on-baller’s management put contract talks on hold earlier this year, fuelling speculation he would leave the Swans.
“I don’t know. We’ve got to get through tonight before we worry about that,” Longmire said of Mitchell on Saturday.
“Let’s get through tonight and that will sort itself out.” Mitchell admitted pre-match he would need to make a call on the future soon.
“I’m not sure when that time will come. I’m sure it will come soon,” the 23-year-old told AAP.
“It’s something I haven’t really thought about too much for the whole year.
It’s in the hands of the club and my manager so I’m sure they’ll sort through it.”