Carlton head of football Brad Lloyd says the Blues head into 2023 with a healthy list.
The Blues’ 1st to 4th-year players return on Monday ahead of a campaign where Carlton is looking to make finals for the first time since 2013 after coming desperately close in 2022.
Michael Voss’ side ended the year with a severe injury list, missing up to six players from the best 22 in the final game against Collingwood.
Lloyd provided updates on several players and suggested that when players return after their Christmas break, the club should be in strong shape.
“George (Hewett) is getting up and running, he had the back injury at the end of last year, he’s been in and around the place,” Lloyd said on SEN Breakfast.
“Corey Durdin had a shoulder cleanup, so he’ll get moving from now.
“Marc Pittonet and Matt Kennedy are getting moving again, so we are pretty healthy.
“You get a better feel for it as players start getting back into the club now, we feel we’re in pretty good shape.
“There’s three or four that will have a modified preparation but post-Christmas they’ll be full steam ahead.”
Pittonet underwent knee surgery post-season, while Kennedy’s year was cut short by foot surgery. Hewett also went under the knife for a back injury that saw him unable to play after Round 18.
David Cuningham and Sam Philip were among the other Blues to be ruled out for the season during the year, as did now delisted duo Oscar McDonald and Luke Parks.
Despite the way the season ended last year with the Blues losing their last four games, Lloyd added there was optimism heading into 2023.
“There was devastation but you could also feel this real belief around the place as well with where the club’s come from,” he acknowledged.
“There are a lot of learnings, I think there’ll be some growth. I look at the coaching staff, they only really come in as a coaching group together this time last year, so there will be some cohesion from the coaching group in the way we play.
“We need to grow in every area, we’re a smidge off finals, but we want to be a strong club around the competition, so we’re going to need to take a few more steps than just missing finals.”
Lloyd and newly appointed Executive General Manager of Football Geoff Walsh are teaming up with the Global Institute of Sport to offer aspiring sports administrators a rare opportunity to learn the business side of the AFL and AFLW.
Held from February 8-9 2023, the Certificate in the Business of Australian Football will be run over a two day course at the MCG, with topics covered including recruiting, list management and football operations.
Further information and registration can be made at gis.sport/au