Blues attractive for AFL recruits: coach

Carlton coach Brendon Bolton is upbeat his AFL club will be a destination of choice during the off-season frenzy.

The Blues collected the wooden spoon in 2015, their first in almost 10 years.

It meant Princes Park offered little appeal for any players seeking a fresh start and finals action.

They were fully expected to struggle again this year but have been competitive in Bolton’s first season at the helm, testing Hawthorn and Sydney in the past fortnight.

The Blues have already declared their interest in Gold Coast youngster Jaeger O’Meara, while fellow Sun Dion Prestia is also expected to return to Melbourne.

Bolton wouldn’t comment on Carlton’s post-season plans but hoped his club would appeal to any potential recruits.

“That our club’s one where people can see there’s a real connectedness and people within our club feel a sense of belonging,” Bolton said.

“When you feel a sense of belonging it becomes an attractive place.”

Bolton noted he was focused on the final four rounds, starting with Sunday’s MCG match against St Kilda.

“Right now I think all clubs are looking into next year,” he said.

“But (list manager) Stephen Silvagni’s role is to do that.

“I’m purely focused on the Saints at the moment but we’ll see how it all unfolds.”

Sunday’s match will be the swan song for Andrew Walker, who announced earlier this week he was hanging up the boots.

“(He) probably would have kept playing a month ago but his knee flared,” Bolton said.

“He’s the first Carlton indigenous player to play 200 games, so I think he deserves the respect.

“He’s had a terrific career. Most of the players describe him as the most elite preparer at Carlton.”

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