Bolter in line to lead Blues

Written By Unknown on Minggu, 13 Januari 2013 | 14.43

Andrew Carrazzo is one of the leading candidates to captain the Blues if Chris Judd steps down. Picture: Wayne Ludbey Source: Herald Sun

CARLTON midfielder Andrew Carrazzo could cause a boilover in the Carlton captaincy race, with the hard-running midfielder firming as the Blues next on-field leader.

Superstar midfielder Marc Murphy was considered the early favourite to replace Chris Judd, but Carrazzo's standing among his peers has continued to soar this pre-season.

Carrazzo, 29, became a father to triplets late last season and if he can show he can juggle fatherhood with the official leadership duties in the NAB Cup next month the job could be his.

The Blues hope the leadership change will help ease some of the burden on Judd, 29, after five years in the top job.

Forwards coach John Barker said Judd would continue to play a lead role on-field and flagged more time in attack for the champion onballer.

"Juddy is the type of guy who will be a leader no matter whether he is a leader by name or not, because he is just a leader by nature," Barker said.

"What it will do is release some shackles for him and it will allow him to play with a bit more freedom than what he perhaps has over the past couple of years, which is great for him.

"I'd love to have him spend a bit more time in the forward line.

"I've been chipping away at it with him and he's been receiving my advances pretty positively."

The Blues are set to decide on their new captain after the NAB Cup, with Murphy and fellow midfielder Kade Simpson in the running.

Barker said the Blues had excellent options.

"Andrew Carrazzo, Kade Simpson and Marc Murphy are all outstanding candidates for the club," he said. "As we sit, that decision is still up in the air, but I tell you what, she's going to be a tough decision trying to decide who leads the club."

The Blues have put a tumultuous year behind them, with coach Mick Malthouse helping renew confidence after they missed finals in 2012.

Barker said the club did not want to predict where it should finish this season.

"This year is going to be one of the most hotly contested years in football," he said.

"You want to be there at the pointy end of the season, but I don't think there is any point putting out (expected) positions in the top eight.

"Hopefully, we can get there (finals) and we are looking forward to seeing how a fit and healthy list under Mick Malthouse operates this year."

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