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Top 10 AFL player transfers for 2021

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The 2020 AFL trade period was one of the biggest in recent history, with nine players moving clubs via free agency and 26 changing colours through club-to-club trades.

Some of the best players in the AFL decided to switch teams during the busiest trade period in years, while several others were forced to pack their bags and find new homes.

In ranking the top 10 transfers ahead of the 2021 AFL Premiership season, we have decided to prioritise how accomplished the individual player is, how good they might be in the future, how big an impact they are likely make this year, and how powerful their new club is.

Over 30 players were considered for the top 10, but not everyone could be included, so here are some others that arguably could have slipped in.

Honourable mentions: Shaun Higgins, Tom Phillips, Peter Wright, Jesse Hogan, Jack Higgins, Nakia Cockatoo, Isaac Smith, Mitch Hannan, Stefan Martin, Jye Caldwell.


10. Orazio Fantasia

Fantasia AFL bettingTraded from: Essendon
Traded to: Port Adelaide

The former Bomber Orazio Fantasia stands out to us due to the flexibility he provides Port Adelaide. Zak Butters made a big impact when moving from the forward pocket into the midfield last season, and he can do that more often with Orazio playing in the front third. At his best, Fantasia is an electrifying speedster who can run rings around opposition defences, so Port fans will be hoping he rediscovers that kind of form this year.


9. Jaidyn Stephenson

Jaidyn Stephenson AFL bettingTraded from: Collingwood
Traded to: North Melbourne

Although North Melbourne are set for another season down at the wrong end of the ladder, they have picked up a potential superstar in Jaidyn Stephenson. The Magpies pushed Stephenson out of their squad in a questionable manner after a mixed 2020 campaign, allowing the Roos to snatch the 2018 AFL Rising Star for next to nothing. Stephenson is a known threat in the forward half, but the Roos may look to use his electric speed in the midfield.


8. Aliir Aliir

Aliir AFL bettingTraded from: Sydney Swans
Traded to: Port Adelaide

One of the biggest surprises of the trade period was Aliir Aliir’s move from the rebuilding Sydney Swans to last year’s minor premiers. Aliir adds a very strong presence to Port Adelaide’s backline, which has often struggled to deal with powerful forwards in recent years. This pickup gives the squad greater stability in a very crucial area and could be the boost the Power need to reach the 2021 AFL Grand Final.


7. Ben Brown

Ben Brown AFL bettingTraded from: North Melbourne
Traded to: Melbourne

Ben Brown kicked over 60 goals in three consecutive seasons before a disappointing 2020 campaign saw him put on the trade table by North Melbourne. The 28-year-old Tasmanian gives the Demons exactly what they need: an experienced key forward who, when fit, will help out the emerging Sam Weideman tremendously. This was an excellent acquisition from the Dees, who will expect to feature in finals this season. Brown is currently priced at $26 with Sportsbet.com.au to win the 2021 Coleman Medal.


6. Zac Williams

Zac Williams AFL bettingTraded from: GWS Giants (free agent)
Traded to: Carlton

Carlton became a destination club during the latest trade period, as Zac Williams was but one of several stars to sign on at Princes Park for 2021 and beyond. Although he spent most of his time at Greater Western Sydney playing off the half-back flank, the free agent was sold a package in the Blues midfield. Williams played elite footy whenever the Giants put him in the middle, and he should thrive alongside the likes of Patrick Cripps and Sam Walsh.


5. Adam Saad

Adam Saad AFL bettingTraded from: Essendon
Traded to: Carlton

With Carlton legend Kade Simpson retiring at the end of the 2020 season, the Blues needed a proven performer to fill out their back six. Enter Adam Saad, who was an obvious target after three standout seasons with an underperforming Essendon side. The speedy half-back flanker will help turn the Blues into finals contenders – if not in 2021, then certainly in the near future.


4. Brad Crouch

Brad Crouch AFL bettingTraded from: Adelaide (free agent)
Traded to: St Kilda

St Kilda made a big jump in 2020, advancing to the semi finals before being knocked out by the eventual premiers Richmond. The Saints were crying out for another star to join Jack Steele in their strong midfield, and Brad Crouch answered the call. Crouch is an inside bull and a ball magnet who will shine with the upwardly mobile Saints after eight frustrating seasons at Adelaide.


3. Joe Daniher

Joe Daniher AFL bettingTraded from: Essendon (free agent)
Traded to: Brisbane Lions

The Brisbane Lions are looming large in 2021 after picking up star forward Joe Daniher, who will pair with Eric Hipwood in what now looks to be a very dangerous attacking six. Daniher is reportedly in perfect health and recently kicked four goals in the Lions’ practice match against Gold Coast. A fit Daniher is a nightmare matchup, and a motivated one is even scarier. You can back Daniher to win the Coleman Medal at $10 with Sportsbet.


2. Adam Treloar

Adam Treloar AFL bettingTraded from: Collingwood
Traded to: Western Bulldogs

Adam Treloar’s move to the Western Bulldogs was the most intriguing bit of business to take place in the last trade period, as the Magpies effectively forced the star midfielder out the door for next to nothing. The Bulldogs didn’t exactly need another gun in the middle, but Treloar’s presence gives them the option to push the likes of Marcus Bontempelli and Josh Dunkley further up the ground more often. If the combination works, we could see the Doggies embark on another premiership sooner rather than later.


1. Jeremy Cameron

Jeremy Cameron AFL bettingTraded from: GWS Giants
Traded to: Geelong

Whenever a dominant key forward moves clubs, it is a big deal, and this trade could have an enormous impact on the 2021 season. The Geelong Cats are in pole position to reach their second consecutive AFL Grand Final as Jeremy Cameron pairs up with the 2020 Coleman Medal winner, Tom Hawkins. Cameron is a country boy and should fit into the Geelong program with no issues, while his departure from GWS leaves the Giants looking vulnerable this year. The spearhead forward can be found at $9 with Sportsbet to win the Coleman Medal, just behind Hawkins at $7.

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