Beveridge forecasts changes for AFL's Dogs

Coach Luke Beveridge has foreshadowed changes in the Bulldogs side to face Essendon.
Coach Luke Beveridge has foreshadowed changes in the Bulldogs side to face Essendon.

Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge concedes there could be changes following the side's AFL misfire against Carlton.

Entering Sunday night's clash as hot favourites to win a fourth-straight game, the Dogs were blown away by 52 points to begin their Queensland hub stint in disappointing fashion.

Instead of joining four other teams on four wins in equal second, the Dogs will face in-form Essendon at Metricon Stadium on Friday night sitting outside the top-eight.

"We've got to dust ourselves off. We play in five days and we've got our full squad up here," Beveridge said.

"We've got to just keep presenting. There might be one or two boys who get an opportunity this Friday.

"It's only up the road from the hotel but when you get here, you've got to be totally ready and we weren't.

"It's up to all of us to make sure that we stimulate the energy levels to be ready make sure we swim against the rip when they're trying to take us out to sea."

A positive from the smashing at the hands of the Blues was the return of premiership midfielder Lachie Hunter.

The former vice-captain played his first game since March after serving a four-match ban for an alleged drink driving accident during coronavirus lockdown.

He was one of the Dogs' best, finishing as the leading ball-winner on the ground with 27 possessions.

"Lachie was pretty good. He spent a bit of time forward, spent a bit of time on the wing and I thought he had an impact, especially during the middle stages," Beveridge said.

"Now the challenge is to work on who plays on our wings and who plays forward.

"We've had a number of new players come into our side since Lachie's been out of it and we'll process that again this week."

Australian Associated Press