Star defender Christian Salem has been confirmed to be sidelined for six to eight weeks after completing surgery to repair damaged cartilage in his knee, adding to the Dees' already extensive injury list.
Salem sustained the injury fairly early into Melbourne's Round 1 clash with the Doggies, where he was subbed out of the match.
On a more positive note for the club, Melbourne have revealed that defender Trent Rivers remains a possible replacement, with the 20-year-old preparing to undergo a fitness test in the upcoming week. Rivers missed the opening round due to a PCL injury, but has now rejoined the main group in training and is expected to get back to action soon.
Both Mitchell Hibberd and Jake Lever have made good progress on their respective injuries, and could potentially make their season debut as early as this week. Forward Kade Chandler has also progressed out of the rehab group after spending time recovering from an abdominal muscle tear.
Melbourne travel to Metricon to take on the Suns in Round 2, who are in high spirits after an impressive 27-point victory over the Eagles.