Magpies mulling over huge move amid nightmare AFL season

·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
Nathan Buckley has been under significant pressure amid a poor start to the season from Collingwood. (Photo by Matt King/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)
Nathan Buckley has been under significant pressure amid a poor start to the season from Collingwood. (Photo by Matt King/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)

Collingwood will likely retain under-seige head coach Nathan Buckley for 2022, amid a range significant off-field changes at the club.

The Magpies have limped to a 2-7 start to the season and sit 16th on the ladder, after a troubled off season which saw a number of high profile players leave the club, as well as president Eddie McGuire.

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According to Channel 9's Sam McLure, the Magpies' preference is to get their house in order before concentrating on the impact of the coach.

Speculation has been rife that Buckley could be moved on at season's end, but on Footy Classified on Monday night, McLure said Collingwood were more focused on filling key positions of need elsewhere in the club.

List manager Ned Guy recently quit the club, in the wake of the high-profile departures of star players Adam Treloar and Jaidyn Stephenson.

“The pressure clearly has been on Nathan Buckley and the team. I sit here tonight quite confident that he‘ll be coaching Collingwood in 2022," he said.

“Graham Wright, who is the new football boss… has come into the club and seen quite a few problems, one of course being the list. We know that there‘s another challenge afoot with the presidency with Jeff Browne.

“The view internally at Collingwood is there is enough going on to destabilise the group, and that not much can be placed at the feet of Nathan Buckley.

“I think personally he will be extended. I think the assistant coaches currently under Nathan Buckley are unlikely to be there next year.”

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Despite the reports of Collingwood's preference to retain the existing coaching staff, McLure's co-panellists weren't convinced.

Kane Cornes said retaining Buckley would simply lead to similar speculation about his future dogging the club again in 2022.

“I‘m not sure what we learn in one year,” he said.

“I see their list as not challenging next year, they need a mini-reset. What‘s going to change at Collingwood from where they are in one year?

“We‘re going to be sitting here this time next year possibly having the same discussion about Nathan Buckley.”

Buckley laments drop off in Pies' AFL loss

The Magpies dominated Saturday's opening quarter against Sydney at the SCG, grabbing an 18-point lead, before the Swans steadied to run out 30-point winners.

Buckley's team sit 16th on the ladder, with clashes to come against premiership contenders Port Adelaide, Geelong and Melbourne during the next four rounds.

The 2-7 start comes amid a backdrop of Jeff Browne's reported intent to claim the club presidency from Mark Korda, who was only recently installed as Eddie McGuire's successor.

A summer of turmoil has led to Collingwood dropping to 2-7 in the first nine rounds of the 20-21 AFL season. (Photo by Matt King/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)
A summer of turmoil has led to Collingwood dropping to 2-7 in the first nine rounds of the 20-21 AFL season. (Photo by Matt King/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)

The Age claimed on Saturday that it was a matter of when not if regarding Browne, and that the timing of his move hinges on uncertainty over the under-pressure Buckley.

"It's so much not a distraction that I don't even know what you're talking about," Buckley said, when asked about the report on Saturday.

Buckley lamented the way his side lost control of the contest after quarter-time.

"We came here to win. We felt like we had the plan to do so and I think it probably showed early in the game that what we put in place was going to trouble Sydney," Buckley said.

With AAP

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