Luke Shuey looks on during the R19 clash between West Coast and St Kilda at Optus Stadium on July 24, 2022. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

WEST Coast midfielder Luke Shuey will lead the club as captain for a fourth season, with the Norm Smith medallist keen to take the Eagles through a crucial rebuilding season. 

Shuey, who has been backed by the Eagles' key leaders several times this off-season to continue as captain, won the players' vote, with input from the coaching staff. His appointment was formally endorsed by the West Coast board on Tuesday. 

After persistent soft tissue injuries restricted him to just 20 games in his first two seasons as captain in 2020 and 2021, Shuey played 17 games last season, including every game from round 10. 

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A minor hamstring injury provided a setback this summer, but he is in full training now and has combined his usual speed at stoppages with occasional stints at half-back. 

He will be supported in 2023 by vice-captains Jeremy McGovern and club champion Tom Barrass, with the rest of the leadership group yet to be confirmed. 

Jeremy McGovern and Tom Barrass spoil Brody Mihocek during the R4 clash between West Coast and Collingwood at Marvel Stadium on April 9, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

Ruckman Nic Naitanui, who managed just eight matches last year, due to injury chose not to pursue an official leadership role after being elevated to the vice-captaincy for the first time last year, with premiership captain Shannon Hurn also continuing to lead in an unofficial capacity.  

Barrass was promoted to the Eagles leadership group last season and rapidly emerged as a key on and off-field figure to the point where he was seen as a likely captain if Shuey did not win the role. 

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"Luke has enjoyed strong support from the player group over the last three years and that sentiment carried through in the process this season," general manager of football Gavin Bell said. 

"He was keen to continue in the role and we are delighted he will remain as captain.

"Jeremy has been a vice-captain to Luke for each of the last three years and he has been joined by Tom who has demonstrated his leadership qualities, both on and off-field, for several years."

As well as Barrass, young star Oscar Allen is also seen as a potential captain but is still just 23 and coming off a 2022 season that was wiped out by a serious foot injury.  

Premiership defender Liam Duggan, 26, has been a member of the club's leadership group but has been restricted in his training this pre-season because of a knee complaint.