Essendon champion Matthew Lloyd raised the issue on Channel Nine’s Footy Classified, looking at past players who have left the under performing club.
“When you’re 11 goals down at half-time, you start to ask the question of yourself as a young player,” Lloyd said.
“All talented footballers would have mates playing at better clubs in front of big crowds and when you’re losing time and time and time again, that’s why Steven May and Tom Lynch left the football club.”
AFL TRADE NEWS: WA clubs linked to off-contract Tigers star Shai Bolton
— AFL (@AFL) April 2, 2021
Former co-captain Tom Lynch left the club in 2018, going on to win back to back premierships with the Tigers in 2019 and 2020.
Lynch, joined by Steven May and Gary Ablett, became the third Suns captain to leave the club.
In response to Lloyd’s comments, Cornes singled out Rankine and Lukosius as ideal targets for the Power to pursue – who both come out of contract at the end of 2022.
Lukosius and Rankine were both drafted out of South Australia in 2018, selected with Picks 2 and 3 respectively.
Cornes believes seeing players from their fellow 2018 draft class play in marquee matches for rival clubs could lure them out of the Gold Coast.
“When they see the guys they were drafted with playing on the MCG in front of 50,000 and playing finals,” Cornes said.
“I know Port Adelaide has been linked to Zach Merrett and these types of players, but I would be going that hard after Izak Rankine and Jack Lukosius as a Port Adelaide fan saying ‘we’ll get you back, you’ll play in front of 35,000, we’re going to have success for the next five years, it’s better than being up there losing every week and turning up to training depressed and playing in front of 6,000’.”