Josh Kelly is off contract at the end of 2019.
Josh Kelly is off contract at the end of 2019.

Giants hopeful Kelly will re-sign soon

GWS coach Leon Cameron wants superstar Josh Kelly locked away on a contract extension before the start of the 2019 season.

Cameron said contract talks with Kelly's management were progressing quicker than when the 23-year-old midfielder neared coming off contract in 2017.

"I'd have to say we're in a really good position. Two years ago, it wasn't until probably two-thirds the way through the year. Hopefully from my point of view, from a selfish point of view, we can get it done before the season starts," he said.

Kelly's future will be one of the talking points of 2019, with clubs including North Melbourne and Carlton lining up to lure the midfield jet back to Victoria.

But the Giants will be desperate to re-sign Kelly and teammate Stephen Coniglio after losing Dylan Shiel, Rory Lobb and Tom Scully at the end of last season.

"It's a talking point and we can't deny it," Cameron said.

"We are not going to shy away from it and say, 'I'm sick of that being asked' because it is what it is.

The Giants are keen to lock in Josh Kelly. Picture: Michael Klein
The Giants are keen to lock in Josh Kelly. Picture: Michael Klein

"In terms of Josh, we definitely have a discussion over a coffee, I don't do it regularly. It's once or twice every month to see how it is going.

"We feel it is progressing well. A fair bit quicker than what it was a couple years ago because we have had some really good dialogue.

"His manager has been fantastic and we feel we are in a really good space and we think it's going to start heating up."


But Cameron said he wasn't going to put a timeline on contract talks.

"If Josh Kelly signs at the end of the year for fives years, fantastic, magnificent.

"If Josh Kelly re-signs for five years at the start of the year, is it better off because it takes it off the table and it's not a talking point? Absolutely.

"At the end of the day, all I'm worried about, is Josh Kelly staying at the Giants."

Meanwhile, Giants defender Nick Haynes, one of this year's most in-demand free agents, has switched managers.

The off-contract defender has dumped entertainment agent Ralph Carr for Paul Connors and Robbie D'Orazio.

Haynes, 26, has attracted interest from Melbourne clubs, but is closing on a lucrative deal to stay with the Giants.

- with Jay Clark