Bailey Smith during the 2022 AFL Round 1 match between Melbourne and Western Bulldogs (Photo by Cameron Grimes / Zero Digital Media)

Western Bulldogs CEO Ameet Bains has publically addressed trade rumours regarding contracted midfielder Bailey Smith.

Despite the fact Smith's current deal at Whitten Oval runs through next season, the outside runner was linked to a move to Geelong in July, as the Cats were understood to be 'workshopping' a deal after reportedly having contacted Smith's management.

The Bulldogs, who were without Smith on Saturday night due to illness, stormed into GMHBA Stadium and defeated the Cats, keeping their finals hopes alive for at least another day as they will now await the result of Sunday's Blues-Giants bout.

Speaking to Channel 7's Mitch Cleary prior to the Bulldogs' triumph, though, Bains understood rival teams' interest in Smith but was categorical about the on-baller's contractual obligations to the Dogs.

"Obviously, [we] always understand the interest in someone with Bailey's profile, he's contracted for next year, so as far as we're concerned, that's that," said Bains on Saturday.

Smith's 23.5 disposals per game this season are down from his lofty 2022 average of 29.1, while the engine-roomer is also registering fewer marks, tackles, inside-50s, and clearances per game compared to last year's glistening campaign.

Following the retirement of premiership Cat Isaac Smith, a spot on a wing in coach Chris Scott's side could potentially await Smith if a deal can be struck with the Dogs during October's anticipated player movement space.

Until then, though, the prospect of finals football is still on the Western Bulldogs' minds, and they will keenly observe Sunday night's regular-season finale between Carlton and GWS, with the Dogs requiring a Blues victory to cement a finals seed.

Marvel Stadium