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Demon Jack Trengove puts hand up for senior recall

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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)
Jack Trengove has put his hand up for selection after several strong weeks in the VFL
Jack put his hand up during the week, which is great
Melbourne coach Paul Roos

JACK Trengove's agonising two-year wait to play again at AFL level could be about to end as Melbourne considers making up to four changes for its trip to Darwin to face Port Adelaide next Saturday.

Demons coach Paul Roos said the team's growing depth would allow it to rotate young players and Trengove would be in the mix to step in for his first game since round two, 2014. 

After two years ruined by a serious foot injury, Trengove approached Roos this week and told the coach he was ready to return to the top level after six straight games in the VFL. 

He ramped up the pressure on selectors with another 25 possessions in the VFL on Saturday night. 

Click here for Paul Roos' full media conference

"Jack put his hand up during the week, which is great," Roos said on Sunday.

"I had a chat to him about what we want to see from him and he's not far away.

"He is starting to play some really good footy … he played another good game last night, which is terrific.

"We'll leave some players out, no doubt, going to Alice Springs … who those players will be will play out during the week." 

As well as Trengove, key forward Chris Dawes, tough midfielder Aaron vandenBerg and defenders Jack Grimes and Christian Salem could return to face the Power. 

Back-up ruckman Cam Pedersen and midfielder Dom Tyson were missing on Sunday because of illness, while small defender Neville Jetta will definitely return after serving a one-match suspension.

Roos said he was pleased with the evenness of Sunday's performance and the fact it wasn't the club's main ball-winners carrying the midfield, with Billy Stretch (31 possessions) and Tom Bugg (30) leading the way.

"Jack Viney was a little bit quieter today but he just keeps cracking in, and Nathan Jones and Bernie Vince played a little bit more half-back," the coach said.

"To put other guys in there takes pressure off our senior players and makes us a bit harder to play against.

"A lot of it's about flexibility around the guys we've got now at our disposal and we're confident they can play different roles."

Young midfielder Christian Petracca was among the Demons' best on Sunday, finishing with 21 possessions and five inside 50s and tackling relentlessly.

He made a particularly lively start and Roos said there were signs he was improving every week.

"The last couple of weeks he's starting to get to more contests, which mean he's understanding the running patterns more and understanding the roles more," the coach said.

"I thought his decisions were a lot simpler today. Last week he probably made harder decisions and turned the ball over."

On a sour note, Petracca was robbed of what would have been a brilliant goal after a dodgy score review over-ruled the goal umpire's decision and deemed his kick had been touched.

"I looked at the replay and I don't know how you can pick it from the replay," Roos said. 

"Ridiculous."