Walker in but Crows still sweat on key duo

Key Adelaide forward Taylor Walker is uncertain if celebrated teammates Patrick Dangerfield and Rory Sloane will follow his lead and sign new deals with the Crows.

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Walker has re-signed with Adelaide until the end of the 2018 AFL season but the Crows are still sweating on Dangerfield and Sloane, who both come off-contract at the end of next season.

“I would love to have them here, they are a big part of this footy club going forward,” Walker told reporters on Tuesday.

“Who knows, mate. I’m not in their heads. Hopefully they can make that decision and be a big part of this footy club.”

Dangerfield and Sloane, who were co-captains last season in the injury-enforced absence of regular skipper Nathan van Berlo, are certain to attract free agency offers from rival clubs.

Sloane has publicly stated his desire to remain a Crow but Dangerfield has remained non-committal.

New Adelaide coach Phil Walsh admitted he would prefer Dangerfield end speculation and re-sign before the 2015 season starts.

“It’s hard to call,” Walsh told reporters on Tuesday.

“I would rather it is done earlier, of course I would, I’d like that to happen.

“But if it takes longer, it takes longer. It is what it is.”

Walsh said he had no inkling of the thinking of Dangerfield or Sloane.

“I’m not sure where their minds are at,” he said.

Walker also would have qualified for free agency at the end of next season, when his current contract expired, but opted to recommit early.

“I just think it (free agency) takes a bit of the loyalty out of the game,” Walker said.

“And I think I’m a loyal bloke. And the club have been great to me since I have come here and I want to repay that faith.”

Walker, who has kicked 197 goals in 84 AFL games, returned last season after a 12-month absence due to a knee reconstruction.

The 24-year-old said he was disappointed with his output in his 14 games last season but realistic that a full recovery from his injury would take time.

“After blowing your knee out and spending 12 months out of the game, to get your confidence back, I was really happy just to be back playing footy,” he said.