Damian Barrett has addressed the future of star forward Jesse Hogan, who is courting an offer to return to Western Australia.
Hogan is contracted until the end of 2017 with Melbourne, and the lure of a return to Perth remains strong.
"There is talk, Jim...that Melbourne wants an answer quite desperately about what he wants to do," Barrett suggested on the Saturday Rub.
"They're trying to lock him away - it's not at a crucial stage just yet, as in a messily or potentially messily crucial stage, but it's probably not too far away either.
"Simon Goodwin does want to bed down this type of thing before he enters the year."
Barrett suggested Hogan's family ties remained strong, and were hard for Hogan to ignore.
"There's a strong family pull in Perth that does see him go back quite regularly," he said. "He's been back even throughout the course of this year, at least twice that I know of.
"I think it's very understandable, the club is very understanding of that."
But he also suggested Melbourne's standing as a club means they are better placed in the even Hogan departs.
"Melbourne would have dreaded a future without him last year," he said. "They are now prepared for one without him, because they're going to get a fair bit in return."
James Brayshaw said Hogan would be the trade story of the season if he stayed unsigned next year.
"If he stays May, June, July, August unsigned it will turn the whole year a circus because he will be the most talked about player out of contract, potentially," he suggested.
"Why you wouldn't saddle up to the future Melbourne have got, I just don't know."