GEELONG is on the cusp of welcoming back some high-profile names, with superstar Patrick Dangerfield to return from suspension ahead of next week's clash with North Melbourne and gun recruit Jeremy Cameron also on the verge of his Cats debut.
Cameron is yet to feature for his new side after enduring a hamstring setback on the eve of the season, though coach Chris Scott is confident he could line up against the Kangaroos at GMHBA Stadium next Sunday evening.
Fellow forward Gary Rohan will also return from suspension, with Geelong hoping its trio of key inclusions will help to overturn a frustrating start to the campaign that has left last year's Grand Finalists with an indifferent 2-2 record.
"I hope next week (for Cameron)," Scott said.
"But you might be surprised to hear, it's not really my call. I'll have a bit of a say on it, but you've got to be careful that you don't base your decision-making on what you want to be true.
"I said during the week that we'd make a cautious, well-considered decision with him and I still think we're in that frame of mind.
"If they're all fit, I don't see why we couldn't bring them all back together. Our preference is to have the same seven forwards every single week, but I think they're such good players that we'd squeeze them in."
Geelong is also confident that Brandan Parfitt will return next week, after he was a late withdrawal on Sunday due to a hip complaint, while Mark Blicavs should be fine after failing to finish the loss to Melbourne with a corked knee.
But despite the issues the Cats are currently facing, having lost to Adelaide and Melbourne and only narrowly scraped victories over Brisbane and Hawthorn, Scott does not believe it is time to panic just yet.
"I don't think we're going that well, but I think we're going better than we were at this time last year," Scott said.
"You might say we were in a lockdown this time last year, but at this stage of the season … it's a low bar, isn't it? The upside is, we're going better than this time last year. But we took a bit of time to hit our straps last year.
"I'm not saying it's the plan. We haven't gone in thinking we'll just put ourselves to sleep for the first half of the year and get going when it really counts. Unfortunately, the way I'm looking at footy at the moment – and I have for some time – there aren't many free games.
"It's hard work every week and if you allow yourself to get talked into the idea that we're not going that well, we can fall behind really quickly. I think at 2-2, we're disappointed with that. But all is not lost