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We have to earn respect: Beveridge

Press Conference | Luke Beveridge Luke Beveridge spoke to the media ahead of this week's match against Melbourne

The Western Bulldogs still have a way to go to warrant respect from the competition, according to senior coach Luke Beveridge.

But their credentials have certainly lifted over the past month. 

Beveridge believes the more his side can build strong performance – and win games – the more the narrative will turn to the Bulldogs being known as a consistent outfit.

“We’re one of those 18 that makes the competition pretty even,” Beveridge told media at VU Whitten Oval.

“We don’t yearn for (outside recognition), we haven’t established ourselves as that team that should be getting any credit.

“We’re in a situation now where if we continue to win, that narrative will change again.

“But we’re not there yet.”


The Bulldogs have won their past two, against ladder-leader Geelong and fellow top-eight side Port Adelaide, and now have three wins from their past four matches.

This week the challenge is against Melbourne, who sit 16th on the ladder but are coming off a win against Carlton. 

Tom Liberatore is “unlikely” this week according to Beveridge, and probably another week away, while Billy Gowers will return from an ankle injury through the VFL.

Dale Morris is in the selection mix after two solid games for Footscray, but now has to force his way into the side.

Beveridge said he felt continuity at the selection table had contributed to recent success

“We can’t afford to have one or two of our boys just being slightly off, we get opened up,” Beveridge said.


“Over the last month we’ve had really even contributions, hence our side hasn’t change much. 

“What’s encouraging for us is our group are starting to establish that we can come in and out of different modes, and we can create winning formulas without it being too complicated.

“Essentially the players have still got to enjoy what they do, and they can’t be curtailed.”

With star Melbourne forward Tom McDonald ruled out through injury, Beveridge is expecting the Demons to use Braydon Preuss with Max Gawn in attack – if the latter returns from injury.

He believes it’s a challenge the Bulldogs’ back six are ready for, with the defensive chemistry building as the season has gone on. 

“Our backs are working well, and they’re halving and winning more aerials than we were previously,” Beveridge said.

“That will be important against Preuss, he’ll spend time in the ruck though when Gawn’s off the ground.”