Lachie Neale is contemplating requesting a trade back to Western Australia, with Fremantle his most likely destination should he return to the state.
Sources close to the situation confirmed that Neale’s heavily pregnant wife Jules was keen to return to Perth, having left the city three years ago when he was sensationally traded from the Dockers to the Brisbane Lions. In order to support Jules, Neale is also interested in a possible move back.
Neale has two years left to run on his contract with the Lions, with whom he won a Brownlow Medal last year and has made the finals three straight years.
The Dockers are likely to gain an early draft pick for Adam Cerra, which could help enable a deal.
But given his contract, any move would be contingent on Brisbane agreeing on a move for the star midfielder.
Neale, 28, was plagued with injuries this year but still managed to play some excellent football including a finals-record 46-disposal game against Melbourne last week.
Originally from South Australia, Neale spent seven years at the Dockers before his shock trade request to the Lions, who had courted him for months in the year before he was due to become a free agent.
Cerra, a top-five draft pick in 2017, late last month requested a trade back to Victoria, with Carlton in the box seat for his services.
West Coast have previously indicated they would not seek to bring in a big-name trade or free agent target in the off-season, instead focusing on heading to the draft after several seasons of topping up, most notably with Tim Kelly.
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