Essendon has announced two changes to the team for this week’s game.
David Zaharakis and Matthew Leuenberger return for Saturday’s annual ‘Clash of the Sash’ against rivals Richmond.
The two will take the places of veteran Adam Cooney, who has been rested, and big man Sam Michael.
In a nod of confidence to Essendon’s youngsters, Conor McKenna, Kyle Langford and Jayden Laverde all hold their spots after promising performances in their return against St.Kilda.
Laverde will take great confidence out of last week’s game, playing for the first time since injuring his shoulder in round four.
Playing predominantly forward, Laverde moved well to provide another target for Essendon midfielders and was able to hit the scoreboard with two goals.
McKenna also showed good signs playing in a new position off half-back able to provide run through the middle of the ground.
Will Hams will also be able to continue his run in the seniors after maintaining his spot on the senior list despite Jonathan Simpkin being taken off the LTI.
Read more about Will Hams’ elevation here.
Fans are encouraged to get down and support the team this Saturday at the MCG.
Tickets and game day information can be found here.
Richmond vs. Essendon
1:40PM Saturday July 15
IN: M. Leuenberger and D.Zaharakis
OUT: A.Cooney (rested), S.Michael (omitted)
MILESTONE: C. Bird (150 games)
B: M Dea, M Hartley, A McDonald-Tipungwuti
HB: C Dempsey, M Brown, J Gwilt
C: Z Merrett, D.Zaharakis, O Fantasia
HF: W Hams, J Daniher, K Langford
F: P Ambrose, M Leuenberger, J Laverde
Foll: S McKernan, C Bird, B Goddard
IC: D Parish, C McKenna, M Gleeson, J Kelly
Emergencies: A Francis, A Cooney, S Michael