O'Keefe cautious with move via AFL draft - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

O'Keefe cautious with move via AFL draft

By Leonard Siragusa 16/10/2008 08:54:29 PM Comments (0)

A fear of ending up at a non-Victorian AFL club could see Ryan O'Keefe not enter the pre-season draft and remain at Sydney.

O'Keefe, who is currently out of contract, was keen to force a move back to his home state of Victoria during last week's trade period, but the Swans were unable to strike a suitable deal with Hawthorn or Carlton.

He could now choose to enter December's pre-season draft, where Melbourne has the first selection ahead of Fremantle, West Coast and Port Adelaide.

Then come Essendon and Carlton, although Blues CEO Greg Swann said earlier this week his club had effectively withdrawn from the race for the talented forward because they didn't believe he would still be available with pick six.

While O'Keefe said he would make a decision on his future some time next week, he admitted he was concerned about not finding his way back home to a Victorian club.

"That's probably one thing I have to go through," the 27-year-old said.

"I'm not so certain I'll be able to get through, so that's something we have to weigh up."

Should O'Keefe decide to stay at Sydney - who had previously offered him a three-year deal worth more than $450,000 a year - he was confident of being welcomed back into the fold by his team-mates and coach Paul Roos.

"I've got a lot of really good mates there, and I've spoken to them and they're really supportive," he told radio station SEN.

"They've got no dramas with me if I was to go back.

"(Paul Roos and I) spoke pretty closely through the whole period, and he's obviously said whatever the decision, if you want to come back that's fine and all that sort of stuff, so he's been really great throughout the whole process."

But should O'Keefe decide to leave, he admitted he did not want the Swans to end up with nothing.

O'Keefe has played 164 games in nine seasons for the Swans, was part of the 2005 premiership team and was recently awarded life membership of the club.

"It's something where we tried to get the job done through the trade so that Sydney actually got something for me," he said.

"So if I was to sort-of walk out on Sydney and them not get anything for me, then that's probably something I would feel a little bit bad about."

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