WITH Tim Kelly gone and Joel Selwood facing a delayed pre-season, Cam Guthrie could see himself taking in more responsibility in the Geelong midfield early in 2020.
A young veteran having racked up 161 games in nine seasons, the 27-year-old found a permanent role in the midfield in 2019.
“I had a good chat to (midfield coach) Matthew Knights at the end of the year, and he was happy with the role I played in 2019. I think I’ll do something similar,” Guthrie said.
“We lost Tim Kelly to a trade and Joel might have a bit of slow start to the pre-season.
“Hopefully he’ll be fine by Round 1, but you can’t bank on that necessarily.
“I think it will be important for myself to have a solid start to the year and go from there.”
Guthrie, who commenced pre-season training earlier this week after an off-season that included a European sojourn, admits getting over the preliminary final loss to Richmond took some time.
“It takes a while because your whole year is built towards finals success,” he said.
“We got close but bowed out late. It’s still tough. Looking back, it’s still really disappointing. But you can only play as well as you can on the day.
“We prepared as well as we could, and Richmond were a better side.
“Now, we’re looking forward and hopefully see some improvement. We’ve had a few list changes; some new draftees, players from different clubs.
“Now it’s just about setting ourselves up for next year.”
Those players from different clubs are former Adelaide forward Josh Jenkins and ex-St Kilda midfielder Jack Steven, and Guthrie is confident both can have an impact at Geelong.
“Jenkins is a prove goal kicker; anytime you can get someone like that come into the team and help you on the scoreboard is super handy,” he said.
“And Jack’s a really hard-running midfielder; a multiple best-and-fairest winner at the Saints, and he’s a quality player.
“They’ve both done some good things at their former clubs, and we’re really looking forward to helping them replicate that here.”