PERTH, WESTERN AUSTRALIA - MAY 27: Adam Cerra of the Dockers signals for the ball during the round 10 AFL match between the Fremantle Dockers and the North Melbourne Kangaroos at Optus Stadium on May 27, 2018 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Will Russell/AFL Media/Getty Images)

The race to land in-demand Dockers midfielder Adam Cerra continues to take shape, as Carlton, Hawthorn and Richmond all remain to be keeping tabs on the out-of-contract onballer.

Cerra looks to be one of the most coveted players heading into the off-season, with no sign of a new deal for the 21-year-old at Fremantle.

While the Dockers remain confident in retaining Cerra's services past 2021, several Victorian clubs are in pursuit of the young gun, but face problems of their own.

According to SEN's Sam Edmund, Cerra is understood to be "keen" on a return to his home state, however Carlton and Richmond are believed to be battling to find cap space to accomodate the gun Docker.

Despite originally being in contention for Cerra, the Bombers are considered to be out of the race.

Essendon's recent refocus on re-signing in-form midfield stars Darcy Parish and Zach Merrett is likely to have played a part in falling out of the frame.

AFL Rd 2 - Fremantle v GWS
PERTH, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 28: Adam Cerra of the Dockers reacts after his team's win during the 2021 AFL Round 02 match between the Fremantle Dockers and the GWS Giants at Optus Stadium on March 28, 2021 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Carson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Carlton are facing a similar scenario, having recently locked away Patrick Cripps and Harry McKay to new deals, whilst also needing a seven-figure plan for rising star Sam Walsh.

While the Blues remain interested in Cerra' services, the club aren't keen on parting ways with their first-round draft selection according to Edmund.

"He is keen to get back to Melbourne," he said on SEN.

"He won't be going to Essendon, Richmond don't have the depth of funds. Cerra fits at the Blues but the pursuit has hit a snag. They don't want to part with their first round pick."

As things currently stand, Carlton hold the the sixth overall pick in the upcoming draft.

PERTH, AUSTRALIA - MAY 27: Adam Cerra of the Dockers gets his kick away under pressure during the round 10 AFL match between the Fremantle Dockers and the North Melbourne Kangaroos at Optus Stadium on May 27, 2018 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

Hawthorn are the fourth club believed to be in consideration for Cerra's signature, and would likely have the funds to match Cerra's reported demands of close to $750,000.

Recently retirements to Tom Scully and Jonathan Patton are understood to have opened up significant cap space for the Waverley club.