MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 02: Bombers head coach John Worsfold celebrates the win during the round 11 AFL match between the Essendon Bombers and the Carlton Blues at Melbourne Cricket Ground on June 02, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Dodge/AFL Photos/Getty Images)

Speculation has mounted over the future of John Worsfold as head coach at Essendon after the Bombers yet again failed to break a September drought dating back to 2004.

After a dismal 55-point elimination final loss to West Coast in Perth last Thursday night,  many have questioned whether Worsfold is the right man to take Essendon to an elusive finals success but the coaching ranks have already been bolstered with the acquisition of Blake Caracella as an assistant.

Bombers CEO Xavier Campbell said Sunday night on Channel 7 that Worsfold’s place at Tullamarine was secure for 2020 – but former great Matthew Lloyd isn’t convinced that his position is long-term.

Speaking to Channel 9’s Footy Classified Monday night, Lloyd said: “I believe John will coach next year and then hand over to a coach the following season. He’s just not ready yet.”

The identity of this alleged successor is unknown, but Lloyd doesn’t believe the recently signed Caracella is on the bill, preferring an existing Bombers assistant as well as a fellow former Essendon player plying his trade on the Gold Coast coaching staff.

“I believe that (Ben) Rutten or possibly (Dean) Solomon, if he joins the club, will be the coach in two years’ time,” Lloyd said.

The 2006 West Coast premiership coach and former two-time Eagles premiership captain came under significant fire following the Bombers’ insipid Round 21 display against the Bulldogs, losing by 104 points.

Two weeks earlier on the same show, Caroline Wilson broke a report stating that talks concerning a new appointment had commenced after that game, and that Rutten was the frontrunner at that stage.