ESSENDON is believed to have expressed optimism that the investigation into the club's controversial supplement program would take a positive turn by the end of the week.
Club officials are believed to have told parents during a meeting on Monday night that they were hopeful of receiving some good news in the next 48 hours.
The club did not tell the parents it expected any outcome to the investigation into its potential use of banned drugs, but said it was hopeful the saga would take some sort of positive twist.
The purpose of the meeting was for Essendon to assure the families of its players that it was focused on their wellbeing. The club was unable to provide them with any facts on where the investigation being undertaken by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority and AFL was at.
The investigation into whether Essendon's players were given performance-enhancing supplements, or were administered in illegal ways, is expected to last for several months.
Meanwhile, the club did not respond to claims made by its former sports scientist Stephen Dank that ''a couple'' of the club's coaches had used supplements that would have been illegal for their players to take under the world anti-doping code.
Dank, the man at the centre of the investigation, made the allegations during an interview on the ABC's 7.30 on Monday, in which he denied giving the players any performance-enhancing drugs and said the Australian Crime Commission had told him he had nothing to worry about.
The former head of ASADA, Richard Ings, said ''one of the most troubling parts'' of the Dank interview was his comment that the coaches had used products that would have been banned for their players.
''I don't think we should sugar-coat this. We're not talking about people who were taking nutritional supplements, a supplement dumbs down the issue as far as I'm concerned,'' he said on SEN.
''Who were those people? What were they taking? Did they have a prescription for taking it and if they didn't, what are the consequences of that?
''This is why ASADA needs to get to the bottom of this whole situation, but if indeed the allegations made by Stephen Dank are true … whether it's a breach of the WADA code is a very technical issue, but from a leadership point of view it's not a good look, is it?''
AFL Coaches Association chief Danny Frawley said he would not respond until after the ASADA investigation had finished, while AFLCA president David Parkin told SEN he had contacted Essendon coach James Hird to express his support.
Parkin said he would be ''flabbergasted'' if Hird lost his job as a result of the saga, but that as coach he was in a no-win situation and could expect condemnation.
''It won't matter whether he knew, didn't know, was encouraging or not knowing, he'll be condemned for the position he's held,'' Parkin said.
AFL chief Andrew Demetriou refused to comment to Fairfax Media on Stephen Dank's Monday night interview. The AFL was continuing to negotiate with the federal government and the Australian Crime Commission in a bid to gain clearance to communicate details of a confidential briefing regarding performance-enhancing drugs by the ACC last week.
That briefing included details of the public allegations against Essendon and of another doping allegation involving another player at another club. It also involved a host of allegations regarding illicit drug use at a number of other clubs.
Late on Tuesday Demetriou was refusing to address individual clubs because he remained bound by confidentiality regarding which other club had the performance-enhancing drug issue.
On Friday the AFL will embark on a series of private sessions with clubs in which league chiefs will address individual club presidents, CEOs, coaches and football operations bosses.
A frustrated Demetriou said on Tuesday night he hoped to be in a position to provide more details to clubs by then.