West Coast forward Josh Kennedy says he will try to convince Mark LeCras to play on next year when the duo share a beer at the end of the AFL season.
LeCras has copped heavy criticism for his topsy-turvy form this season.
Last month, Kangaroos great David King declared LeCras should never be seen at AFL level again after the 30-year-old Eagle put in a poor display in the shock loss to Collingwood.
LeCras has since responded with five goals in his past two matches to revive hopes he is worthy of a new one-year deal.
Kennedy has been disgusted at the criticism levelled at LeCras, and he has urged the 2010 All-Australian to play on in 2018.
“I tell him every day that I hope he’s playing next year,” Kennedy said.
“I love playing with Lec. It would be a sad day if he did leave. I hope he pushes through all this.
“At the end of the year whenever we do finish, I’ll definitely be sitting down with a beer with him and making sure that he’s playing.”
Kennedy said LeCras had been coping despite the heavy scrutiny.
“We all go through form slumps, and when you get over 30 and you’re not performing, then all the commentators will say it’s time for you to move on,” Kennedy said.
“That’s the rollercoaster of footy. It’s something that when I finish, I’m not going to miss.
“Lecca has been a fantastic player for many years. The service he’s given has been remarkable.”
West Coast’s finals hopes are hanging by a thread following Sunday’s eight-point loss to St Kilda.
The Eagles will need to win at least two – and maybe all three – of their remaining games.
West Coast will start hot favourites against Carlton at Domain Stadium on Saturday night, but face an uphill battle to beat GWS (away) and Adelaide (home).
Coach Adam Simpson has confirmed retiring midfielder Matt Priddis will return for the game against Carlton.