Bulldogs star officially asks for trade to Brisbane Lions

Josh Dunkley has officially told the Bulldogs he wants to be traded to the Brisbane Lions.

Dunkley was reported to have been at the centre of a fierce three-way fight for his signature with the Bulldogs and Port Adelaide scrapping with the Lions.

Dunkley is reported to have been offered an incredible six-year-contract with the Lions.

The Herald Sun’s Jon Ralph posted on Twitter the deal is expected to be worth up to $750,000 per-season.

It was reported last month the Power had offered Dunkley the richest contract of the three offers on the table.

Footy reporter Tom Browne just hours earlier reported on his Triple M podcast the Bulldogs had upgraded the club’s offer to a five-year deal — but it was not enough.

Dunkley’s move to the Lions is far from complete.

The Lions will have to find a way to broker a deal with the Bulldogs, who have previously demanded two first-round draft picks in exchange for letting Dunkley walk out the door.

The Lions will reportedly need two first round picks to snap up talents Will Ashcroft and Jaspa Fletcher at the 2022 national draft — and do not appear to have the ammunition required to satisfy the Bulldogs as things stand.

The Lions are reportedly resigned to seeing star Daniel McStay join Collingwood and will receive free agency compensation if the deal eventuates.

Securing Dunkley as a replacement would be a massive boost to the club’s premiership hopes.

Dunkley is out of contract, leaving the Bulldogs with a weaker bargaining position, however, he does not qualify for free agency.

The 25-year-old reportedly left all three suitors nervous when he finished his exit meting with the Bulldogs after their finals elimination without announcing his intention.

The Dogs had been keen to retain Dunkley and had reportedly kept a long-term contract offer on the table for months.

“Josh has indicated to the club he is seeking to continue his career in Brisbane,” Bulldogs recruitment boss Sam Power said.

“Josh has been weighing up this decision for some time and this news is obviously disappointing for the club.

“We believe Josh is at the peak of his powers in a football sense having had a career-best season in 2022, averaging 25 disposals and kicking 18 goals across the campaign.

“The Club was clearly intent on Josh staying with the Bulldogs, having tabled an attractive contract offer for him to continue with us for the long term.”

Dunkley said earlier this month the prospect of moving closer to family would play a role in his call. His partner, Tippah Dwan, plays for the Adelaide Thunderbirds in the Suncorp Super Netball competition, however his sister, Lara, is a member of the Queensland Firebirds.

Dunkley two years ago requested a trade to Essendon mid-Bulldogs contract, but the deal fell over as the Bombers weren’t willing to offer two first-round picks to grab him.