Coach Damien McMahon is confident a post-season "clean-out" and changed culture at Perth can produce improved results, starting against Peel at Brownes Stadium tomorrow.
The Demons slipped from sixth in 2011, McMahon's first season, to eighth last year.
"We have had, I suppose, what you would call a major clean-out," McMahon said. "A complete change of our playing list, 29 new players at our club."
McMahon said moving some players on from Perth had become a priority for the club to return to being a force in the competition.
"It's something that was probably holding us back a little bit," he said. "We had a number of players that were probably being more disruptive than doing good for us.
"We certainly think we are in a stronger situation due to the character of the players that we have at the club.
"To move on with a better calibre of group, we are certainly excited about that."
McMahon said a concerted attempt had also been made to change the club's culture.
"Culture is a word that gets bandied around a lot at the Perth footy club," he said.
"From my point of view, a cultural change is something that was definitely required and I think that will go a long way to helping us become more successful in the future."
He said the addition of former AFL players Chance Bateman (Hawthorn) and Kyle Reimers (Essendon) was a boost for the Demons and would help offset the loss of Sandover medallist and three-times club champion Ross Young.
Peel coach Cam Shepherd has also had to contend with personnel changes in his first season at the Thunder, the club adjusting to its alignment with the Dockers.
Shepherd said while some reserves and fringe league players had been lost to the Thunder because of perceived opportunities with the alignment, it was important Peel retain identity and integrity.
"We don't walk away from that, but our player group at the moment is really strong and they have got a strong bond," Shepherd said."Our strength has been the ability to recruit three boys back from interstate who are Peel people, Paul Bower, James Hawksley and Kelvin Lawrence. That's been a real win and being able to get Marlon (Motlop), Jarrhan (Jacky) and Cruize (Garlett) as well."
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