“WE believe that we can be a really strong team in the near future.”

That’s the opinion of Liam Jones, who - having signed a three-year contract to stay at Ikon Park - is loving the signs shown by his teammates.

The defender was back at his brilliant best on the weekend, recording a best-on-ground performance against Gold Coast.

With 19 disposals and 14 intercepts, Jones was thrilled with the chance to experience another win in Navy Blue.

“To have two in a row, we’ve waited a couple of years for that and I think the boys are really enjoying it,” Jones said.

“It’s a really exciting time to be at the Club.

“We believe that we’ve got the talent and we’re showing now that we’re really mixing together as a team.”

Despite commentary in recent weeks about Carlton’s run of form, Jones believed the last six weeks has been a result of reward for effort and fine-tuning aspects of the game.

With eight of the Blues’ losses being under 20 points, Jones said it was a case of the wheel starting to turn at Ikon Park.

“You look at how we played early in the year and I think a few of the games we lost were really close ones,” he said.

“What we’re doing now is we’re winning those close games so it balances out a bit.

“We’re looking a bit better because we’re winning those ones.”

Returning after six weeks on the sidelines, there was a time where Jones thought he wouldn’t be back in the senior line-up immediately.

That was due to the form of Levi Casboult, who - after starring in defence - has now returned to the forward line and has had a big impact.

As someone who knows the predicament well, Jones was full of praise for his teammate.

“I had a bit to do with Levi when he did go back, just to try and help him with a few things,” he said.

“The way that he was playing, I was concerned that I wasn’t going to get back in the team.

“He’s gone back up forward and Levi has released the shackles a little bit: he’s having a lot of fun and he believes in himself.

“It’s taken that time to get the confidence in himself and he’s playing really good, consistent footy.”