The Western Bulldogs are coming off an impressive 2021 campaign that was soured by a late fade-out in last year's Grand Final to Melbourne

The Doggies sat in the top two for most of the season before losing the last three games of the regular season to finish outside of the top four. 

The side rallied in the finals to win three weeks in a row to earn a spot in the Grand Final, before their demise to Melbourne in the big dance. 

Star players in Marcus Bontempelli and Jack Macrae had quality seasons, whilst the continual emergence of Bailey Smith, especially in finals, has been one that has impressed in the past season. 

PERTH, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 25: Marcus Bontempelli of the Bulldogs handpasses the ball during the 2021 Toyota AFL Grand Final match between the Melbourne Demons and the Western Bulldogs at Optus Stadium on September 25, 2021 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Will Russell/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Luke Beveridge has a strong, star-studded lineup at his disposal that is expected to be premiership contenders once again, and will look to kick off their 2022 campaign with a redeeming win over rivals Melbourne at the MCG tonight. 

With their premiership window still wide open, can the Doggies pounce on the opportunity? Only time will tell. 

Ins: Sam Darcy [National Draft], Tim O'Brien [Hawthorn], Charlie Parker [Rookie Draft], Robbie McComb [Rookie Draft], Luke Cleary [National Draft], Arthur Jones [National Draft]

Outs: Easton Wood [retired], Patrick Lipinski [Collingwood], Lewis Young [Carlton], Lin Jong [retired], Will Hayes [delisted], Ben Cavarra [delisted]


Last Season

After a fairytale premiership run in 2016, the Western Bulldogs have been somewhat disappointing in the time since, but returned to form last season that had them in the top two sides of the season.

However, as mentioned before, they couldn't get the job done against Melbourne in the Grand Final with a second-half fade-out that Bulldogs supporters will hope won't linger into this season.

The Doggies started off the season strongly, winning their first six games which set them up for a strong campaign.

Luke Beveridge's men sat inside the top two with Melbourne for the majority of the season before shooting themselves in the foot in the last three rounds, losing all three games to drop from second to fifth, blowing their double chance in finals.

Strong wins against Essendon, Brisbane and Port Adelaide had them making the Grand Final, but ultimately weren't able to take it all the way.

PERTH, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 25: Cody Weightman and Adam Treloar of the Bulldogs leave the field after the 2021 Toyota AFL Grand Final match between the Melbourne Demons and the Western Bulldogs at Optus Stadium on September 25, 2021 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Gary Day/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Star midfielder and captain Marcus Bontempelli led from the front, winning the club best and fairest, his fourth time winning the award, as well as finishing second in the Brownlow Medal count.

Josh Bruce was the Bulldogs' leading goalkicker with 48 goals, however, unfortunately, went down with an ACL injury late in the season, whilst Aaron Naughton was close behind with 40 goals.

The Doggies finished with 18 wins and 8 losses overall on the season, which they will look to build upon heading into their 2022 campaign.

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