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Lever has chosen "money over success": Walker

Football

Adelaide captain Taylor Walker says young star Jake Lever has chosen "money over success" in his decision to leave the Crows.

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Walker said he had blunt words with Lever after he discovered the skilled defender wanted to abandon Adelaide to join the Demons.

While Lever says he wants to join Melbourne to be closer to family, the Crows have insisted it’s a financially motivated decision.

Walker told Triple M in Adelaide today Lever called him to convey his decision two days after the grand final.

“I was pretty honest – because I don’t like people leaving our footy club,” he said.

“I’m not going to agree with him because I don’t like people leaving our footy club. But I don’t think I was arrogant, aggressive towards him. I was probably blunt.

“He said that he’s decided to leave the footy club and I said ‘mate, if that’s the decision you want to make – we’re two days out from losing a Grand Final and I think our footy club’s going in the right direction’.

“I think it’s pretty much him choosing money over success.”

Walker said it took him “a few days to over” Lever’s decision.

“I’m pretty loyal and I’d love everyone to stay. But I think the AFL has generated this… there will be a lot of player movement going forward.”

He wasn’t sure about the future of Charlie Cameron, who wants to break the last year of his contract with the Crows to join Brisbane – again, a decision the player insists is about getting closer to family.

Cameron’s future looks set to be the subject of a trade period stare down.

While the  Crows are trying to get the best deal for Lever out of Melbourne, they are standing firm on holding Cameron to his contract for next year despite his request to be traded.

“We had a quick chat with Brisbane, but obviously he’s a contracted player and a required player in 2018 at our club,” list manager Justin Reid said.

“We’re happy with Charlie where he is.”

Adelaide find themselves on the opposite side of the equation at this year’s trade period after they unsuccessfully tried to crowbar Bryce Gibbs out of Carlton last year.

The Crows took a more conciliatory tone on the Lever issue on Monday after talking tough about dealing with all 10 Victorian clubs as they seek the best deal.

“We have good dialogue with Melbourne, so we will see there that gets to in the next fortnight,” Reid said.

“There are nine other clubs in Melbourne, but we’re certainly having a chat with Melbourne at the moment.”

With the cautious opening talks of day one out of the way, clubs are expected to start getting down to the business of getting trades done.

Geelong and Gold Coast have made solid progress on a deal for veteran superstar Gary Ablett.

Essendon are confident of landing Jake Stringer, Devon Smith and Adam Saad, while the Lions will listen to offers for Josh Schache.

Geelong free agent Steve Motlop toured Adelaide’s facilities on Monday and will decide if he joins the Crows, Port Adelaide, Gold Coast or stays with the Cats.

– InDaily with AAP

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