Blues forward line 'starting to come together'

Sunshine Coast: Matthew Wright says Carlton's forward picture is "all starting to come together" as the Blues look to build stability after massive list turnover in recent years.

Under coach Brendon Bolton the Blues have been reasonable performers defensively but have remained somewhat impotent going forward. They scored the fewest points of any team in 2017, and haven't posted a triple-figure total since round 11, 2016.

Wright, who turned 28 last week, has been arguably their most consistent forward under Bolton, having been picked up as delisted free agent after being cut by Adelaide in 2015.

But with Carlton having turned over 42 players in three years, the Blues are sending a message that the severe cuts are over, with the focus turning to ensuring the club's emerging players gel.

Speaking on Sunday after an open training session at Maroochydore during the Blues' pre-season camp on the Sunshine Coast, Wright said he could sense the group was working better together.

"Jack [Silvagni] and Charlie [Curnow], this is their third year, Harry McKay [as well], and I've played a bit of footy with Levi [Casboult] now so it's all starting to come together, which is nice," Wright said.

"We sort of know what we're going to do when each other's getting the footy and that rolls into the midfield and then the defenders when they get it, they need us outside.

"It's been good. When you're up here, you just spend all day every day with each other so you find out a bit about blokes off-field and then that sort of translates into game day."

Defender Sam Docherty may be unable to train following his recent knee reconstruction, but according to Wright that hasn't stopped the All-Australian from having an impact. Wright said it would fall to several players to help breach the gap left by Docherty.

"I don't think one person can fill his spot," Wright said.

"He's an exceptional person as well as footballer. He had the white coach's top on today, so he cops a bit of stick from the boys for that.

"His leadership, he works not only with the defenders. It's going to fall on a few blokes' shoulders to step up and fill that role. I'm confident that we can.

"But the role he's going to play for us off-field, [he's] nearly another coach. He really bridges that gap from Bolts as the head coach to the line coaches and then the playing group, he's going to be instrumental for us this year."

Wright lauded Docherty for the way he bounced back following his injury in November.

"As soon as he could get to the club he was straight in there," he said.

"Not only just in there walking around, he was actually there to help blokes. It's a credit to him, and it's a credit to the Carlton footy club's environment we're trying to create."

Wright has been rooming with Angus Schumacher, who was taken at pick 70 in last month's national draft, with the youngster - clearly eager to learn - inundating Wright with questions.

Ruckman Andrew Phillips and backman Alex Silvagni were both on lighter duties at Sunday's session, while recruit Matthew Kennedy spent time training away from the main group. The Blues are in Queensland until Tuesday.

This story Blues forward line 'starting to come together' first appeared on The Age.