The wife of Lance ‘Buddy’ Franklin has dropped the biggest hint yet that the AFL great is ready to walk away from the Sydney Swans after nine years with the club.
Franklin and the Swans are yet to come to an agreement for a new contract to extend his time at Sydney into a tenth season.
The 35-year-old key forward was reportedly insulted by a new offer from the Swans, and there is speculation Franklin could retire or move to a third club.
Jesinta Franklin, a model and newly qualified player agent, refused to rule out a move away from Sydney when asked about the couple’s future on Channel Seven’s The Morning Show on Thursday.
In a statement that was no doubt directed at Swans management, she said ‘we’ve got options’ when host Kylie Gillies suggested there were plenty of other clubs that would snap up Buddy.
The wife of Lance ‘Buddy’ Franklin has dropped the biggest hint yet that the AFL great is ready to walk away from the Sydney Swans after nine years with the club. (Pictured: Buddy and Jesinta Franklin in Sydney on September 26, 2016)
The former David Jones ambassador also did not deny reports the 332-game veteran was possibly seeking a contract with another AFL team.
However, she did clarify they were only ‘rumours’ and ‘speculation’ at this stage.
‘There’s always rumours and speculation swirling around Bud, and I think when he’s coming to the end of such an amazing contract, this was always going to happen,’ Jesinta explained.
‘But I think they’re just that; they’re rumours and they’re speculation.’
In another clue the Franklins are ready to move on, Jesinta added a rather telling qualification as she spoke of the couple’s life in Sydney.
‘We’re really happy in Sydney – at the moment – and we’ve got our life set up here, so we’ll just have to see what happens,’ she said.
Jesinta, a model and qualified player agent, refused to rule out a move away from Sydney when asked about the couple’s future on Channel Seven’s The Morning Show on Thursday
Jesinta appeared to take a subtle swipe at the Swans for their lowball offer, telling The Morning Show her husband has ‘got great footy’ left in him despite his age.
‘I still feel like he’s got lots to give, and he still feels like he’s got great footy [left in him], and he feels so good,’ she said, adding: ‘He keeps saying, “I feel like I’m 21,” which is great. And the stats really show that as well.’
The Celebrity Apprentice star, who shares son Rocky, one, and daughter Tullulah, two, with the footy player, also spoke of the couple’s plans for when Franklin retires in an interview with The Daily Telegraph.
‘When he does retire, whenever that is, we would love to go overseas for six months and just live life without the work commitments and without the stresses and worries that come with living life in the spotlight,’ she said.
‘For us it is going to be so nice to have a big break and just spend quality time with the kids and not have to worry about anything.’
She added of the rumours surrounding Franklin’s contract renegotiations: ‘Sydney is home for us right now and we really enjoy living here.’
In a statement that was no doubt directed at Swans management, she said ‘we’ve got options’ when host Kylie Gillies suggested there were plenty of other clubs that would snap up Buddy. (The Franklins are pictured in Sydney on December 1, 2021)
Jesinta recently completed a three-day course and exam, administered by AFL Players’ Association, required to be a player’s agent.
The course educates aspiring agents on a range of topics include their roles, rules and regulations and talent identification.
Participants first apply to the AFLPA and complete the three-day agent course, which is priced at $3,300, reports the Herald Sun.
They then sit a three-hour entrance exam to test their knowledge.
Sydney are confident Franklin will end his legendary AFL career at the Swans, with Hawthorn ruling out any prospect of a fairytale reunion with the superstar veteran.
Despite reports Franklin was ‘insulted’ by the club’s initial offer to renew his contract, Swans chief executive Tom Harley is comfortable a contract will be sorted, saying the club wants him to finish his career with Sydney.
Jesinta appeared to take a subtle swipe at the Swans for their lowball offer, telling The Morning Show her husband has ‘got great footy [left in him]’ despite his age
Franklin and his manager Adam Finch are yet to respond to the story.
‘I sit very comfortable with the conversations that we are having with Lance and the privacy of those conservations,’ Harley told SEN on Thursday.
‘We also understand at the same time that people will speculate, people will look to unearth stories out of information and I’m not overly concerned with how it [the story] came about.
‘Lance is a unique figure and player in the game and with that the conversations are tailored towards that.
‘Inappropriate and unfair to all parties involved to go into specifics.
‘The conversations we’re having with Lance are remaining respectful with significant amounts of goodwill, great intent.
‘We think Lance has been an amazing contributor to the club, the code and has become iconically Sydney and part of the Sydney Swans family.’
Sydney are confident Franklin will end his legendary AFL career at the Swans, with Hawthorn ruling out any prospect of a fairytale reunion with the superstar veteran. (Pictured in Melbourne on May 20)
Harley also shot down any link between Dustin Martin potentially leaving Richmond and Franklin’s contract.
Martin, arguably the Tigers’ greatest player, has been weighing up a move away from the AFL fishbowl in Melbourne and has strong family and friendship ties in the harbour city.
Franklin has been the Swans’ highest-paid player for almost a decade and it would naturally be difficult to fit him and Martin into the same salary cap.
‘There’s absolutely no link between these two stories, these two players,’ Harley said.
‘We have had no contact nor conversations with Dustin Martin, he’s not our player and it would be inappropriate for us to do that.
‘I am a little bewildered by how the story around Dustin keeps resurfacing and resurfacing with a strong connection to the Swans.’
Despite reports Franklin was ‘insulted’ by the club’s initial offer to renew his contract, Swans chief executive Tom Harley is comfortable a contract will be sorted, saying the club wants him to finish his career with Sydney. (Pictured in Melbourne on July 2)
Richmond coach Damien Hardwick has previously said Martin would be free to leave Punt Rd with his ‘blessing’ and on Thursday was again asked about the triple Norm Smith medallist’s future.
‘[Martin] knows our thoughts, Richmond player for two more years,’ Hardwick said.
‘That’s our method of operation at this stage and that won’t change in the short term or long term hopefully.’
Franklin signed a monster nine-year deal to move to Sydney ahead of the 2014 season following a glittering 182-game career with Hawthorn.
The Swans are reportedly weighing up a move for Richmond superstar Dustin Martin
Hawks coach Sam Mitchell concedes Franklin would unlikely fit into the rebuild out at Waverley Park.
‘I mean, it’s a great fairytale concept but with where our list is at and what we’re trying to achieve, I don’t see it,’ Mitchell, who played with Franklin at Hawthorn, said on Thursday.
In March, Franklin became the sixth VFL/AFL player to kick 1000 career goals amid iconic scenes at the SCG after he reached the milestone.
Franklin has played 332 AFL games ahead of the Swans’ crunch clash with Fremantle at Optus Stadium on Saturday night.