Suspended AFL coach James Hird says he “can’t wait” to get back to Essendon following a four-month sojourn in Europe.
Hird returned to Melbourne late on Tuesday night after embarking on a study tour in France.
The club great is serving a 12-month ban for his part in the Bombers’ 2012 supplements program, but will be free to return to the coaching box for their round-23 clash with Carlton on the last weekend in August.
“I can’t wait to be back and I look forward to heading back to Essendon,” Hird told reporters outside his Toorak home early Wednesday morning.
Hird said he would “definitely” like to return this season, but was yet to speak to his interim replacement and former assistant Mark Thompson about it.
“But we’ll catch up now I’m back, and I look forward to getting back to the club as soon as I can,” he added.
Hird is tipped to be given a match-day role during the finals series in September, should the Bombers qualify in the top eight.
They’re currently seventh on the ladder.
A Federal Court trial between Essendon and Hird against ASADA, launched after the anti-doping body issued show-cause notices to 34 current and former players, is scheduled to begin in August.