Taylor, Cats closer to a new deal

Talks between Geelong and Harry Taylor’s management are moving in a positive direction, in a sign that the Cats are close to retaining their All-Australian key defender.

While Taylor has not yet signed a new contract, it is believed talks are progressing well and that Geelong has good reason for its optimism about him staying.

Taylor has spoken about the possibility of seeking to return to his home town of Perth so that his wife and children can receive more family support, but he has also indicated that he is very happy with the Cats.

That Geelong is enjoying yet another renaissance and is in the top two, with nine wins from 10 games, has also greatly strengthened its position with Taylor, who was interested only in either re-signing with the Cats – as appears all but certain – or joining Fremantle or West Coast for family reasons.

Money has not been a sticking point for Taylor, either, though he would most likely receive more if he was willing to move back to Perth, given Fremantle’s clear need for a key defender to support or replace Luke McPharlin and Taylor’s proven capacity to kick goals – Matthew Pavlich being well past 30 and injured this year – when deployed as a tall forward.

West Coast also was interested in the event that Taylor decided to return home, and, as reported by Fairfax Media last month, the Eagles’ interest was heightened by the possibility that key defender Mitch Brown wanted to head back to Victoria, having missed out on a trade to St Kilda last October.

Geelong all along has been optimistic about Taylor remaining, coach Chris Scott saying he was confident the key defender and sometimes key forward would re-sign.

Taylor recently said that family issues had to be worked out before his football future.

”We just got some personal things to sort out, my wife and I and our family,” Taylor told RSN radio. ”If we can get those things all sorted out, hopefully we are going to be at Geelong a fair bit longer.

”You can appreciate with young kids and a wife and you are all from 3000 kilometres away … You don’t want to rush these decisions.

”Looking after your family is a really important thing because they are going to be there for me hopefully for a long time.

”I just want to make sure they are happy wherever I choose to play my football.”

Taylor said the ”amazing” Geelong environment would not be easy to leave.

”We have got a great team, we have got a great leadership group, we have got a great coaching group,” he said.

”It’s just an amazing place to be around. It seems pretty silly to run away and take off.”

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