AFL Rd 3 - GWS v Melbourne
CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 04: Giants players talk to injured captain Stephen Coniglio of the Giants after losing the round 3 AFL match between the GWS Giants and the Melbourne Demons at Manuka Oval on April 04, 2021 in Canberra, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Greater Western Sydney captain Stephen Coniglio will not be available to play for his side on Sunday after reporting soreness in his toe.

Coniglio, 27, had only just returned to the Giants' senior side after spending three-months on the sideline after suffering both a syndesmosis injury and a toe complaint in Round 3.

In his first game back at the level last week, the former top-10 draft pick found the football on 19-occasions during a 26-point loss to the Sydney Swans.

Coniglio has yet to play in a win from four attempts so far in 2021 and has not tasted victory since Round 15 of 2020.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 26: Stephen Coniglio (left) and Lachie Whitfield of the Giants look dejected after a loss during the 2018 AFL round 23 match between the Melbourne Demons and the GWS Giants at The Melbourne Cricket Ground on August 26, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Head coach Leon Cameron explained in a statement issued by the club on Saturday afternoon that the Western Australian would miss the Giants' all important Round 19 clash with Essendon at Metricon Stadium.

“Stephen reported soreness in that toe he had operated on earlier this year,” Cameron said.

“It was obviously a really significant injury, alongside the ankle, so we’re taking a cautious approach and he won’t play this weekend.

“We’ll see how he pulls up over the next few days in terms of his availability for next week.”

Former skipper Callan Ward will replace Coniglio in the side, with impending free-agent Josh Kelly set to captain the club in what is set to be his 150th AFL match.

22-year-old Nick Shipley has joined the squad as an emergency.