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Dogs finalise leadership group with a new vice-captain

One Dog steps up as another walks A day of change at the Western Bulldogs
Jordan Roughead poses for a photograph during the Western Bulldogs 2015 team photo day at Whitten Oval, Melbourne on January 16 2015. (Photo: Michael Willson/AFL Media)
Jordan Roughead has been appointed vice-captain
WESTERN Bulldogs defender Jordan Roughead says he feels honoured to be named vice-captain as the club embarks on a new era.
 
The 24-year-old joins Dale Morris, Matthew Boyd, Tom Liberatore and captain Robert Murphy in the five-man leadership group.
 
At 22, Liberatore is the youngest member of the contingent, which has evolved since the shock departure of former skipper Ryan Griffen during the NAB AFL Trade Period.
 
The new-look Dogs also parted ways with experienced players Shaun Higgins (North Melbourne), Adam Cooney (Essendon) and Daniel Giansiracusa (retired) during the off-season.
 
Having nailed down his spot at full-back in recent seasons, 200cm Roughead said he felt ready to step up and help lead the playing group.
 
"I do see myself as a leader," Roughead said.
 
"I've had some great leaders at this footy club who I've learnt from and footy clubs I've been involved with in the past. It's something I've never looked upon lightly and it's something that I've always wanted to do.
 
"It's a great honour to be selected in the group and be up there to not only help Murph on game day but off the field as well."
 
Despite their significant gap in age and experience, 32-year-old skipper Murphy said he has long leant on fellow defender Roughead for support.
 
"I think he's someone who naturally puts the team before himself," Murphy said.
 
"He's someone, right from the start even as a young guy, I would lean on.
 
"Someone who sees the game and the club with a real sense of clarity. He's loved and respected by his peers and he's someone I'm already leaning on and will continue to do so for the year.
 
"So I'm rapt to have him as my vice-captain."
 
Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge said Roughead's elevation to vice-captain was well deserved.
 
"He's (Roughead) a really respected young man, he's been at the club for a number of years now," Beveridge said.
 
"It's a great sign that our younger players are progressing, they’re maturing."
 
Roughead said he was "humbled" by the leadership promotion.
 
"I am humbled to be given the opportunity and great responsibility to support Bob to best lead my teammates back up the ladder," Roughead said.
 
"With the inclusion of Matthew Boyd, Dale Morris and Tom Liberatore we feel the group represents a great mix of experience and valuable leadership capabilities."
 
Roughead, recruited to the Bulldogs in the 2008 NAB AFL Draft at pick number 31, has played 72 games since making his debut in 2010.