Carlton's pre-season plans for 2023 took another hit last week with defender Zac Williams seeing his campaign cut short due to an ACL injury.

The ailment adds to a frustrating tenure in the navy blue for the former Giant, who has managed just 25 games across two seasons at Ikon Park due to prior injuries.

The setback will allow the Blues to move Williams to their inactive list and scout a potential replacement before the Supplemental Selection Period deadline on Wednesday, February 15.

Senior coach Michael Voss may look to add a like-for-like replacement for the 28-year-old before the signing window shuts, either adding experienced talent that can have an instant impact or potentially looking toward a more youthful target that will act as a reinforcement for any further injuries to his back third stocks.

Here we name five players that Carlton could consider recruiting in place of Williams for the 2023 season.


1. Sam Gilbey

One of the leading names to be overlooked for the 2022 National and Rookie Drafts, Gilbey endured a difficult year ahead of the draft as he battled with glandular fever and suffered a broken leg that curtailed his campaign with Claremont.

The 18-year-old started the 2022 season in consideration as a potential first or second-round selection, earning a spot in the AFL Academy side that went head-to-head with Colingwood's VFL outfit last May.

Gilbey shared his draft year between the WAFL Colts and in the National Championships, averaging 16.3 disposals 6.7 marks and 3.0 tackles in the latter.

A highlight for Gilbey came in Round 15 of last season with Claremont where he amassed 31 disposals, 6 marks and 7 tackles for the Tigers against Swan Districts.

The 188cm defender is a smooth operator in defence that offers clean ball movement with his rebound kicking.