The VFL Bombers will be looking to snap a three-game losing streak when they travel to the Swinburne Centre on Saturday afternoon, facing minor premier Richmond in a qualifying final.
Essendon enters the contest on the back of an inconsistent month of footy, which included a massive win against Sandringham (85 points) before being beaten by Footscray (94), Richmond (12) and Geelong (41).
The Tigers finished the home-and-away season with a bye and have been undefeated since round 14 against Footscray (58).
Despite falling short to Richmond twice already this season, Essendon escaped with a five-point win in last year’s semi-final to knock the 2018 minor premiers out of the finals series.
It was a day to remember for the VFL Dons, who only led by one point at the final break.
Richmond snatched the lead early in the last quarter, before a James Stewart goal with around 90 seconds on the clock put Essendon in front again.
Vice-captain Danny Younan bagged two goals that day, while Ben McNiece and skipper Aaron Heppell contributed with one each.
Heppell was also named among Essendon’s best on ground, alongside Michael Hartley, Jake Long and Jordan Ridley.
Essendon has made a few changes to its side, most notably missing in-form Ridley, but will see the return of Will Snelling, Josh Begley and Michael Hartley.
After an impressive fortnight Matthew Day has retained his spot as 23rd player, while Mark Baguley will appear in his last finals series, having announced his retirement earlier in the week.
Essendon VFL will live-tweet the match, which will also be televised live on Channel 7.
The final teams will be selected before the first bounce at 2:10pm.
B: 49. M. Dea, 36. M. Hartley, 41. B. McNiece
HB: 76. B. Laguda, 30. B. Zerk-Thatcher, 50. J. Tynan
C: 24. J. Houlahan, 39. T. Mynott, 34. J. Long
HF: 70. L. McKenna, 73. D. Guccione, 55. D. Younan
F: 75. K. Aylett, 16. J. Begley, 12. M. Baguley
R: 74. R. Bowman, 40. W. Snelling, 23. D. Myers
Int: 68. N. Dixon, 59. A. Heppell, 77. H. Hocking, 56. D. Landt, 62. N. Lazzaro, 57. D. Marshall, 65. E. Sibbald, 72. T. Smith
23P: 54. M. Day
B: 43. D. Eggmolesse-Smith, 42. R. Garthwaite, 50. M. Pickett
HB: 33. K. Mcintosh, 38. N. Balta, 45. P. Naish
C: 37. C. Menadue, 26. R. Collier-Dawkins, 28. F. Turner
HF: 39. J. Aarts, 40. C. Coleman-Jones, 21. J. Townsend
F: 31. O. Markov, 25. T. Nankervis, 36. C. Moore
R: 41. M. Chol, 27. J. Ross, 7. D. Butler
Int: 54. J. Ballard, 53. H. Beasley, 78. D. Coffield, 32. L. English, 46. B. Miller, 51. S. Morris, 64. T. Silvestro, 16. M. Weller
23P: 55. L. Street
Brooke Varney is in the final year of her Bachelor of Communications (Journalism) degree at RMIT University. As part of their strategic partnership, Essendon Football Club and RMIT University are committed to providing opportunities for students, staff, players and the wider community.