Their VFL squad is built around a solid foundation of Heppell, Younan & Hocking.I just had a look at Essendon VFL. Have a look at their list. Their depth is quite poor. Despite this, they spanked us both times finished 4th with a 12 win 6 loss ratio and a very healthy 133 %. We on the other hand finished 10th with only two AFL aligned teams falling below us. We ended up with a 7 win 11 loss record and a percentage of 85%. We cant afford as a club to lower the bar as all we are doing is fostering mediocrity.
What Carlton/Bullants have done a poor job of is recruiting and retaining solid state league players to help build a solid side, had they managed to keep or bring back Meese, Marcon & Ballard, it'd have provided a platform to build a decent vfl squad around which in turn would have created a better environment for young players to develop in.
Additionally, whether it's fair or not, there has long been a perception that for VFL listed blokes to really showcase their wares, they'd have to leave PCO..
Fingers crossed that the club reviews its practices at the lower level as something has been amiss for quite some time.