Lance Franklin has officially put contract talks on hold until the end of the season as he continues to weigh up his playing future beyond 2022.

In a statement released by Franklin through his manager Adam Finch and first obtained by AFL Media’s Callum Twomey, the Sydney star says he remains undecided whether to continue playing into next season.

“At this stage conversations have been paused around my contract so I can put all my focus on playing footy. No further comment will be made until the season is done & I have decided about my future,” the statement read.

“I am still undecided and need time after the season to make a family decision about whether I continue to play next year.”

Franklin’s future has been widely spoken about this week, following a bombshell report from Nine News Brisbane which indicated that the 35-year-old had told Sydney he was about to depart, with the Lions reportedly emerging as a strong contender for his services.

Sportsday co-host Gerard Healy put that report to Sydney CEO Tom Harley on Thursday night, who said it was “news to him”.

Sydney is currently one of the in-form teams in the competition, sitting in the top four with three weeks left in the home and away season.

Franklin has kicked 41 goals from 17 matches this year.