Blues coach Brendon Bolton says forward Levi Casboult is still a core part of the club’s future.
This comes in despite of him being dropped from the side for their match with Brisbane.
The veteran forward has only managed the 12 goals from a limited nine games season, and a goalless four-disposal game last week has seen him fall from the side.
The Blues will be bolstered by the inclusion of ruckman Matthew Kreuzer, who is among four ins for the team.
The decision to drop Casboult, who is out of contract at the end of the 2019 season, has brought up questions regarding his future. Especially as emerging young forward Harry McKay, who has been named as emergency this week, has shown some promising signs at AFL level.
Bolton has reassured fans that there is no reason to worry, saying the competition for spots in the side is healthy for the 18th placed Blues.
“We think he’s just got to grow in some of his impact up forward and some inconsistencies in that,” Bolton told reporters at Melbourne Airport on Friday.
“What I love about Levi is he accepted he didn’t play to the level he’d like last week and he’s had a really strong week on the track. He’ll work hard to rectify it so I’m sure he’ll be back in time,”
“There’s no pecking order at our football club. It’s an earned right.”
Dale Thomas, Caleb Marchbank and Lochie O’Brien will also return for Carlton, while Brisbane will be going in unchanged.
Rising Star nominee Paddy Dow has been rested, Jarrod Garlett is unavailable, while Aaron Mullett has been dropped.
Bolton is bracing himself for a tough battle with the Lions, who showed great signs in their emphatic victory last week against Fremantle in Perth.
The Blues are sitting on just the one win, and would love to take a confidence building victory on the road.
“It’s a learning opportunity and just a little bit more validation.” Bolton said.