LUKE Beveridge says he has moved on from the furore of his explosive post-match press conference last week, dismissing concerns around his capacity to be senior coach at the Western Bulldogs.
Beveridge apologised last week and the Bulldogs donated $20,000 to a youth mental health organisation after his post-game comments directed at a journalist following the Dogs' loss to Melbourne in the Grand Final rematch.
The 2016 premiership coach, who is in his eighth season at the helm of the club, addressed the issue with his players but said the club had turned its attention to its clash with Carlton on Thursday night.
'WHAT I DID WAS NOT OK' Beveridge apologises to reporter
"I put the statement out and tried to move on pretty quickly. I get that it lingers a little bit and I understand that," he said on Wednesday.
"I'm really good. I'm energised and really looking forward to Thursday night. We did a lot of things pretty well against the Demons, we won some areas that they totally pantsed us in last time and so that gives us some encouragement going into the game against Carlton but personally I'm good and just looking forward to round two."
Western Bulldogs president Kylie Watson-Wheeler said the club didn't condone the behaviour and the AFL also in a statement said the conduct "wasn't acceptable or appropriate".
Beveridge's post-match comments led to questions on his future as coach of the Bulldogs but he said he was prepared and ready to lead the Dogs as they look to go a step further than last year's Grand Final appearance.
"We've just got to cop it on the chin but it's far from the truth. I've never been fitter, never felt healthier. I know I've been reasonably vocal around what some of the soft cap cuts have done and now's not the time to talk about that again. But that's more about my concern for the code and industry, not my domain, [but] probably a bigger-picture consideration," he said.
"But personally I'm fine. I swam in the bay yesterday, rode on the ergo this morning, spent a lot of time on Carlton and strategy yesterday to best prepare us for Thursday night. We'll put a really strong team out there and I couldn't feel more passionate about what I do and the players and I have a really strong connection and that's the real thing that matters.
"I don't want it to be construed about the soft-cap stuff that I'm not getting support – I get great support. Our people do an amazing job. We're going well internally and I'm fine."
Dogs skipper Marcus Bontempelli is expected to play against the Blues on Thursday night after battling an ankle injury from last week, while Beveridge said Caleb Daniel and Bailey Dale were also in the clear.
Ruckman Stefan Martin is unlikely to come into the team, but recruit Tim O'Brien could be included for his first game for the club. No.1 pick Jamarra Ugle-Hagan came into the team as the medical substitute last week and will again be in the mix, with Beveridge noting the Dogs needed to find the balance between giving the young forward game experience and also knowing what fits best for their forward mix.
"We've got to help him, we've got to nurture him and we've got to give him that exposure when we can," Beveridge said. "We've got to pick the side a little bit for the future where we can and it will depend on availability here and there but also on how he's going at the lower level."