Essendon midfielder Andrew McGrath is being tracked by St Kilda and Richmond with the Bombers facing a decision about the future of the former no.1 draft pick.

With McGrath coming out of contract at the end of the season, former Collingwood president Eddie McGuire let slip the intel on Channel 9’s Footy Classified on Wednesday night.

The 23-year-old has become a solid footballer in the 104 games since his debut in 2017, but his development seems to have stagnated, with his season average disposals only increasing from 19.8 to 22.2 since his first campaign.

McGrath has been touted as a possible next captain at the Bombers, but McGuire feels he could possibly be put up for a trade to aid the midfield dynamics at the club.

“Is [McGrath] the next captain, or is he trade bait?’ McGuire said.

“Because I know there are two clubs who are into him at the moment.”

When asked who was interested, McGuire replied: “St Kilda and Richmond.

“I think they’re looking at him very closely.

“Is this the opportunity, because they’ve got so many of the same type, to maybe flick one out, get another player in?”

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Former AFL coach Ross Lyon was more blunt in his assessment of McGrath’s career status, naming another Essendon midfielder as better candidate to be a future captain of the club.

“He’s not performing to a pick one level as I see it,” Lyon said.

“I think he’s a good solid player and he’s got great character, but if you’re not going forward as a club, maybe you cut your loss … but what are you going to get for him?

“I think Merrett’s the next captain. No one prepares better than Merrett and competes more consistently than Merrett and he’s been on the outer in leadership.

“To me, he’s got the intensity and the will and the drive to be their captain.”

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