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Luck changing for Trengove on road to return

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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 4: Jack Trengove poses for a photograph during the Melbourne Demons official team photo day at the MCG in Melbourne on February 4, 2016. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media)
Luckless Melbourne midfielder Jack Trengove
It's almost a case of him coming to us when he feels like he's comfortable
Paul Roos on Jack Trengove

MELBOURNE will continue to take a cautious approach with Jack Trengove's comeback, resisting any urge to rush the midfielder back into the senior team. 

Trengove has made an ultra-impressive return to the field after being cruelled by a career-threatening navicular fracture in his foot, averaging 19.5 disposals from his four games for VFL affiliate Casey Scorpions this season.

That also includes his return game when he notched just one kick after he was concussed in the first five minutes of the match against Frankston at Casey Fields in the opening round.

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Coach Paul Roos is heartened by Trengove's progress and said the next step was up to the former club co-captain.

"I had a chat to him last week and told that I'd purposely left him alone ... it's almost a case of him coming to us when he feels like he's comfortable and saying that he really wants to put his hand up for senior selection," Roos said on Wednesday.

"He's said that he's loving being back out there and I said to come and knock on my door when he thinks he's ready.

"Then (we'll talk about) what he really needs to work on to play AFL as opposed to just letting him play (VFL) and enjoy it.

"(But) it's a credit to him the way he's been playing."

Melbourne football manager Josh Mahoney said the 24-year-old had exceeded the club's expectations in regard to his form.

"Jack's progressed further than what we would have anticipated, which is really positive," Mahoney told AFL.com.au.

"The club and Jack's main focus is for him to put a number of games together, get through those games and pull up without any issues.

"We haven't even started to consider AFL selection at this stage."

After a promising start to his career, the No.2 pick from the 2009 NAB AFL Draft had multiple surgeries on his troublesome left foot in 2014, first in April and then in November.

Jack Trengove trains with the Demons on Wednesday. Picture: Getty Images

Trengove has not played at AFL level since round two, 2014.

"We haven't put a number on how many games he has to play," Mahoney said.

"We don't want to fall into the trap of moving along too quickly.

"We've said all along, it's a long-term plan that we've put together for Jack and we're certainly not going to speed that up at this late stage."

Young midfielder Angus Brayshaw's run of bad luck continued on the weekend, following on from the knee injury that interrupted his pre-season.

Brayshaw, who was dropped from the senior side after the club's 33-point win over Richmond, was concussed within the first 15 minutes of the contest against Essendon at Windy Hill.

That was bad luck in itself, but the way he suffered the injury is hard to believe.

Brayshaw was knocked out when an errant kick from teammate Alex Neal-Bullen struck him in the back of the head from close range.

The 20-year-old was helped from the field in the hands of trainers and did not take any further part in the contest.

 

"Like any player who's been concussed, we'll monitor him during the week," Mahoney said.

"We won't make a call until late in the week on whether he plays this weekend."

Christian Salem will also be monitored after he was concussed in the Demons' 39-point loss to St Kilda.

Salem clashed heads with teammate Jack Viney in the third quarter of Saturday's match at Etihad Stadium and was put through the concussion test, before being declared unfit to return to the ground.

"Christian will be treated in exactly the same way (as Brayshaw). Early in the week he won't do much training and it's in the hands of the doctors as to how we progress him from there," Mahoney said.