Essendon will welcome back deputy vice-captain Andrew McGrath for Friday night’s clash with the Saints.

McGrath was a late withdrawal last week after suffering an adductor strain in training during the Bombers’ bye week.

Head of high performance Sean Murphy said the 24-year-old had successfully rehabbed his strain and will return for round 14’s fixture.

“He (McGrath) had that lower adductor injury and just couldn’t quite get up for the game,” Murphy told Essendon FC’s Liberty Financial Performance Update.

“He’ll be available this weekend, it’ll be great to have him back in the team.”

Midfielder Darcy Parish finds himself in a similar position to what McGrath experienced last week, racing the clock to be fit for Friday night.

Parish was subbed off with a corked calf, which is healing, but a decision to see whether the 24-year-old is available will likely come later in the week.

Darcy Parish nurses his corked calf after last week's loss to the Blues. (Photo: AFL Photos)

“‘Darce’ had that calf cork, which he copped at the very first centre bounce,” Murphy said.

“It just got progressively worse and he was subbed out of the game.

“He was still pretty sore early in the week and it’s improving every day so he’s still a test for this weekend.”

In terrific news, Will Snelling, Patrick Voss and Kyle Langford will all return from injury this weekend via the VFL.

Murphy said Snelling and Voss will play restricted game-time, while Langford will be "unrestricted".

“’Snell’ is on the back end of his rehab block and into the performance block now,” Murphy said. 

“He’ll actually play some game minutes this week. it’ll be a little bit restricted, but it might be over three quarters of a game. We’re excited to see him back out there this weekend.

“(Langford) finished his rehab block and finished a strong performance block over the last month, and we’ll see him playing in the VFL this weekend and he’ll play unrestricted minutes in that game which is really exciting.

“’Vossy’ is another one who’s had a good month of training and we’ll see him on some restricted minutes in the VFL this week.”

Kyle Langford will play his first game since going down in the Bombers' season opener. (Photo: AFL Photos)

Veteran defender Michael Hurley is experiencing light at the end of his injury tunnel as he eyes off a return to playing in several weeks, barring any setbacks.

Murphy said Hurley will re-join main training in the next week or two.

“For ‘Hurls’, the hip’s going really well and he had that calf niggle which popped up not that long ago,” Murphy said.

“He’s just been working through that and he’s going to be integrating back into skills over the next week or two and then we’re hoping we’ll see him up and playing footy in the next month or so.

“Really exciting news for ‘Hurls’, he’s been unbelievable in going about his rehab and just kept at it.”

After being unavailable last week due to injury, forward Devon Smith has undergone a successful clean out of his right knee in a pre-arranged arthroscopy procedure.

Both Smith and the club have been managing the best course of treatment for his chronic knee issues. Due to some new symptoms, and in consultation with a specialist, it was deemed appropriate to explore further through arthroscopy which he had earlier this week.

Smith will require a period of rehabilitation, and return-to-play timeframes will be dependent on how his knee settles post procedure.


Player Injury Duration
Darcy Parish Calf Test
Nik Cox Ankle Long term
Michael Hurley Hip Indefinite
Devon Smith Knee TBC
Updated June 15, 2022