Competition for spots is heating up at training according to Collingwood Assistant Coach Hayden Skipworth as the Pies gear up for their Preliminary Final in a week’s time.
With only one game in the past three weeks, Skipworth said it was important that players got kilometres into their legs throughout the week.
“It’s obviously important to get some match play, we’ll do two 20 minutes blocks of match play and probably a couple hours of training,” he said on Friday.
“We need to get a lot of work into the guys and there’s guys that need it like (Nick) Daicos coming back to get him some minutes of match play.”
Nick Daicos is the name on everyone’s lips, with Skipworth confirming the 20-year-old will play in next week’s cut-throat Final.
“He’s driving the coaches mad at the moment, he’s in our offices every day, he’s come to opposition footy games and he’s done everything he can,” he said.
“He’s ticked all the boxes and he would’ve played this week if we needed him but obviously having the luxury of the week off is going to be beneficial for him.”
Skipworth also confirmed skipper Darcy Moore will be fine to play as he manages a hand injury.
“He managed it into last game so the extra week off is going to be crucial,” he said.
“I think we put him in a splint for a couple of days to really let it settle down but he’s fine to go.
Team selection will again be tough leading into the Prelim, however Skipworth said the Pies’ focus was on this week first and foremost.
“We had it tough last week obviously with Nobes missing, that was a really hard call and we were at match committee for hours and hours throughout the week,” he said.
“Obviously Nick coming back we’ll find room for him no doubt but there’s going to be an unlucky person to miss at this stage as well.
“We try and keep it as normal as we can, we’re very much process driven so we’ve got to get through today before we get through tomorrow.
“We’re just focusing on nailing today and we’ll work our way through the week as we get on.
With the Pies’ opponent to be decided on Saturday night when Port Adelaide host GWS, Skipworth said excitement was already building ahead of next week.
“We don’t need to build it up any more, you look around and there’s a couple thousand at training,” he said.
“As you get to the pointy end you’ve got to be across all teams and know what they’re doing.
“We’ll be watching the Saturday game with a lot of interest.
“This time of year you’ll be playing a good team no matter what and we sort of know what teams are going to do, you’re just looking for any minor detail changes.”