Magpies in to win AFL flag: McRae

·3-min read

Coach Craig McRae is backing Collingwood's unlikely finals surge to deliver a premiership, declaring "we're here to win it" after the Magpies charged past Fremantle and into a preliminary final.

Four unanswered first-quarter goals set the Magpies up for a 11.13 (79) to 9.5 (59) semi-final victory that booked a final-four date with Sydney at the SCG next Saturday.

Saturday's victory, headlined by Jordan De Goey's outstanding midfield display in front of 90,612 at the MCG, adds another layer to Collingwood's unlikely rise from 17th to the top four.

"We're here to win it, we are," McRae told reporters.

"One more game and you're in a grand final.

"We're here to win this thing and we're going to work our butts off to get better every day to give ourselves every chance.

"We'll set ourselves up and we know what's coming up in Sydney but we'll give it our best shot."

De Goey (24 touches, six clearances and 12 score involvements) starred alongside Jack Crisp (two goals, 24 disposals and six clearances).

Jeremy Howe and Darcy Moore, who McRae revealed had been sick all week with "some concern" he'd be unable to play, marshalled a well-drilled defence while Jack Ginnivan kicked three goals.

The Dockers looked like deer caught in the headlights, with only Collingwood's inaccuracy making for a flattering scoreboard.

Caleb Serong (34 disposals, 16 contested possessions) and Lachie Schultz (two goals) kept Fremantle in the game, while wingman Blake Acres, defender Luke Ryan and retiring veteran David Mundy were busy.

In the first minute, headline-grabbing Magpie Ginnivan instinctively stayed down as everyone else flew close to goal, coolly soccered home the opener, then pounded his chest and fist-pumped in delight.

From there, Collingwood's resolute press kept the toothless Dockers at bay while Brody Mihocek, De Goey and Jamie Elliott nudged the Magpies to a four-goal advantage at quarter-time.

Schulz nailed two second-quarter goals but only Collingwood's wasteful finishing kept the half-time margin at a flattering 27 points.

Schultz teed up Griffin Logue for the opening goal of the third term before Ginnivan ended the Magpies' run of nine consecutive points to extend the lead to 31.

The Dockers had a pulse at three-quarter time but Mason Cox snuffed out any hope of a comeback when he nabbed his 100th AFL goal early in the final term.

Mundy, 37, kicked his 161st goal in his 376th and final game midway through his last quarter but it proved only a consolation.

"It was a big occasion in terms of 90,000, crowd against us and I thought they had a lot more players who handled that situation over us," Dockers coach Justin Longmuir said.

"A lot went wrong but if you looked at it, they just handled the basics of the game a lot better than we did.

"We're disappointed and that's how we should feel right now. Disappointed that we weren't up to the challenge and weren't up to Collingwood tonight."