TONIGHT'S monster top-of-the-table clash between Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs is set to proceed after Demons players - including the man who visited a COVID-exposed site - returned negative tests.  

The AFL has also confirmed the Marvel Stadium roof will be closed for the mouth-watering contest, that will go ahead in front of empty stands amid Victoria's snap lockdown.

The League was holding its collective breath when news broke that a Melbourne player had visited a Tier One exposure site.  

But the player, who will now be forced to self-isolate for a fortnight, has since returned a negative test.  

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In a statement on Friday morning, Melbourne said that all players and football staff had tested negative for COVID-19, ensuring that tonight's match - the first of the Sir Doug Nicholls Round - is on. 

Clayton Oliver, Max Gawn and Christian Petracca during a training session at Gosch's Paddock on May 24, 2021. Picture: Getty Images

It will be a massive battle as these red-hot teams - both with only one loss for the season - fight it out for the ultimate prize of clear ladder leader.

The Western Bulldogs were also forced to take COVID tests and isolate earlier in the week when a staff member visited Highpoint Shopping Centre in the Victoria's western suburbs during a COVID-19 exposure period. Again, the Bulldogs test results came back negative.

Both teams have made changes for the clash, with smooth-moving Demons defender Christian Salem returning to replace Neville Jetta. 

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The Bulldogs regain ruckman Tim English after a month sidelined because of concussion, while Pat Lipinski is back in the team to cover the loss of gun midfielder Adam Treloar.