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'Anxious' Dons not afraid: Goddard

Brendon Goddard, Jack Macrae and Clinton Young at the launch of the NAB Cup on Monday - ${keywords}
Brendon Goddard, Jack Macrae and Clinton Young at the launch of the NAB Cup on Monday
BRENDON Goddard's Essendon teammates are "anxious" as the investigation into the club's supplement use begins, but the star recruit insists they are not fearful of the future.

Goddard, who crossed to the club last year after 205 games for St Kilda, is set to line up for the Bombers for the first time on Friday night in the opening round of the NAB Cup against Collingwood and the Western Bulldogs.

However, his debut in the red and black has been overshadowed by the scandal engulfing Essendon, which Goddard said had players concerned.

"Understandably they've been a bit anxious," the 27-year-old said on Monday.

"It's probably hard for me to get my head around it because I obviously wasn't there last year and not directly involved or affected."

But despite his absence last year, Goddard has played a key role in keeping the Bombers focused in the past week.

Admitting he was no stranger to off-field distractions during his career at the Saints, Goddard said he had drawn on those experiences to guide some teammates through the drama.

"There's no doubt I've offered my opinion on certain things and experience to the younger guys and the whole playing group," he said.

"As a whole team we've really helped each other in certain situations, particularly the last week, in talking about what we need to do and control what we can control.

"And that's really important for us as a playing group to move on."

Goddard, whose immediate impact at the club was evidenced by his introduction into the leadership group, said the Bombers remained positive.

"At this point in time it's all allegations and at no point can you jump to conclusions," he said.

"[For] supporters it's important to stick by the club because the boys are doing everything they can to prepare for another season of footy and it obviously starts on Friday night."

Follow AFL website reporter Callum Twomey on Twitter at @AFL_CalTwomey.
The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs