MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 25: Sam Darcy of the Bulldogs poses for a photo during an AFL Draft media opportunity at Marvel Stadium on November 25, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

The Western Bulldogs have announced updates on a quarter of ailing Dogs following their Thursday night loss to the Sydney Swans.

Bailey Smith, who was sidelined for the Swans clash due to illness, will return to the Bulldogs' lineup for a crucial Friday night clash against Essendon, while Sam Darcy, James O'Donnell, and Lachlan McNeil are all set to spend stints on the sidelines.

According to Bulldogs Head of Sports Medicine Chris Bell, Smith is reinvigorated and ready to return to the field.

“He had a really quiet week last week whilst he recovered, but in some good news he has improved and is re-energised," he said.

“He will be monitored though main training this week, but I am expecting him to return to availability.”

Unfortunately, however, the Bulldogs were ravaged by injuries in their loss to the Swans, with youngsters Sam Darcy, James O'Donnell and Lachlan McNeil all set for stints on the sidelines due to in-game incidents.

Darcy copped a major cork to the thigh which has since resulted in bleeding and swelling in his leg.

Bell spoke on the status of Sam Darcy today, revealing that the club "will manage Sam conservatively but do expect him to miss the next few games of footy."

As for O'Donnell and McNeil, both will be forced to miss this week with concussions, after separate incidents in the first half of Thursday night's fixture.

O'Donnell was hit heavily in a contest after lunging for a spoil and copping an incidental shoulder to the head from Swan Sam Wicks.

McNeil was bumped off the ball by Swans' captain Dane Rampe and was suffering from delayed concussion post-match.

These casualties add to the lengthy list of Bulldog injuries, featuring Jason Johanissen, Liam Jones, Hayden Crozier, Roarke Smith and Tim O'Brien, all of whom are still at least two weeks away.

Mitch Hannan will test his calf complaint during the week and hopes to return to the side this week alongside Bailey Smith. He plans to train fully on Wednesday.

The Bulldogs will face Essendon this Friday night, 7:50pm at Marvel Stadium in a top-eight shaping contest to kick off Round 19.