K rock Football

Saad willing for any role

Carlton recruit Adam Saad. (Carlton Image/Rose Zarucky)

CARLTON boom AFL recruit Adam Saad expects to bring his dash and dare to the Blues’ half-back line in 2021 but is adamant he’s willing to play a defensive lockdown role.

Saad requested a trade from Essendon in early October and officially landed at Ikon Park on Wednesday after a deal that saw the defender, pick 48 and pick 87 depart in exchange for picks eight and 78.

The 26-year-old has made a name for himself with his driving run and carry and was also used as a lockdown defender at times at Essendon this year, but rejected reports he’d been unhappy about playing the latter role.

“To be honest, I don’t listen to the outside noise – I listen to (what’s said) inside our four walls,” Saad told reporters on Thursday.

“Whatever the coaches and whatever the players value and whatever my role is for the team, I play it to 100 per cent of my ability.

“Whether it’s lockdown, whether it’s run and carry – whatever’s best for the team, I do it and I’ll do it proudly.

“So whenever I pull the jumper on I put in 100 per cent effort and there’s always things said out in the media but I don’t look much into that.”

Saad said a desire for a “fresh start” was behind his decision to leave Essendon just three years after joining from the Suns, but emphasised his time in the Bombers’ Queensland hub this season hadn’t contributed to his decision.

The 26-year-old was unwilling to disclose his “couple of reasons” for leaving the Bombers but said the move was best for him and his family, and once the decision had been made there was “no turning back”.

“It was a tough decision – I was thinking about it for weeks,” Saad said.

“At the end of the day, sometimes you have to make big decisions and what’s best for yourself and family and family is so important to me.

“So I felt like for me, a fresh start and a new challenge was something that I needed to do at this time in my career.”

Despite waiting for the penultimate day of the trade period, Saad said he’d always been confident a deal would get done and was midway through a running session when the trade was completed.

(C) AAP 2020