We rate Collingwood’s disappointing 2014 season.
(11th: 11 wins, 11 losses)
What went right:
The first half of the season.
Nathan Buckley’s side were 8-3 after 11 rounds and were looking on track for a finals spot, with captain Scott Pendlebury yet again outstanding.
The introduction of youngsters Jack Frost and Tom Langdon gave Pies fans a glimpse into the future and it was all looking good.
What went wrong:
Injuries clearly took its toll on Collingwood’s season, with 21 players listed as unavailable for the Magpies’ final game of the season against Hawthorn.
However, Buckley’s side showed its frailties even in their early-season wins.
An unhealthy reliance on Travis Cloke and Jamie Elliott for goals came back to bite them, and a weakened defence meant they were unable to stem the flow of opposition goals no matter the improvement of both Langdon and Frost.
The Collingwood captain was yet again superb in what was an extremely disappointing season for the club.
As sleek and as skilful as ever, the skipper averaged 14 kicks and 28 disposals a game to become a shining light in what was a dark, dark season for the black and white faithful.
There’s no doubt Collingwood’s list is still good enough for finals football, but there are still questions around the coaching nous of Nathan Buckley.
Whilst a fine player in his time, Buckley has shown he still has a lot to learn as a coach at AFL level in a tactical sense.
Tom Langdon and Jack Frost were revelations and will become key Magpies in the near future.
Injuries hurt their cause massively in 2014, but if they can keep their key men fit and healthy, the Magpies should come into the finals equation in 2015.