It might be a romantic reunion for Eddie Betts — but is he really what the Blues need?

Eddie Betts is all but certain to be a Carlton player in 2020, with a trade tipped to go down as early as Thursday morning.

The 32-year-old will return to his former club, likely for a third-round selection, following a season where he was sent to the SANFL after a run of poor form.

But a number of former greats are split on the idea of bringing the veteran to a club who has been linked with multiple small forwards at rival clubs, including Dan Butler (Richmond) and Tom Papley (Sydney Swans).

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Two-time North Melbourne premiership player David King believed the club was better targeting a younger player who could remain at the club for a decade, rather than sign Betts on a one-year deal.

“He’s been a wonderful AFL player. An absolute star for Carlton and what he did with the Adelaide Crows was just magical,” King said on Fox Footy’s Trading Day.

“But at 33 years of age and 320 odd games, I just think it is time to move on.

“What’s he going to do for Carlton? People say he’s there for cultural reasons to be a leader. They’ve got some great leaders already at the moment. I don’t see a need for this to happen.

“I’d rather spend that pick on a Dan Butler or a Riley Knight, 23-24 years of age. And get a player you can hang onto for a decade.


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Eddie Betts booted 37 goals in 2019. Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images.

Eddie Betts booted 37 goals in 2019. Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images.Source: Getty Images

“They are my thoughts and clearly they are not of Carlton’s. That’s the business we are in.”

Speaking on Fox Footy’s On The Couch in September, senior AFL reporter Tom Morris explained there was an internal “power struggle” over the Betts trade, with key stakeholders not aligned.

Carlton list manager Stephen Silvagni told the Crows in August the club was not interested in Betts.

This was not an opinion shared by many other members of the club, including new coach David Teague, who appears to have won a “power struggle” — as termed by Melbourne great Garry Lyon — over whether to recruit Betts.

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“Stephen Silvagni told Adelaide two weeks ago, we don’t want Eddie Betts,” Morris said on Fox Footy.

“But David Teague is so keen on Eddie Betts, and other people in the footy department are for on-field and off-field reasons, that’s part of the reason they’d like him. I think he’ll end up at the Blues, he wants to get there.”


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