Collingwood’s Dane Swan has suffered a foot injury, the club says, and looks set to be out of AFL for a month.
Collingwood midfielder Dane Swan concedes an enforced lay-off may have come at a good time after being ruled out for a month with a foot complaint.
Swan has struggled to recapture his best form this year, and will now miss a crucial month in the Magpies season with a plantar fascia injury at the ball of his left foot.
With his normally prolific disposal count well down this term, speculation on Swan’s fitness has plagued the five-time All-Australian all season.
But Swan told Triple M radio there was no one major injury to blame.
“I’ve had little ailments and niggles all year but none of them have been major enough to keep me out of games,” he said.
“I still had belief that I could make an impact positively on the side and I clearly haven’t done that to the best of my ability.
“I expected a lot more of myself and so should my coaches and my teammates.”
Swan said it could simply be a case of needing a rest.
No AFL player has lined up for more games since the start of the 2006 season, with Swan running through the black and white banner 204 times.
“It’s something different for me, I haven’t missed a big block like this ever,” he said.
“This will give someone else a go who is able bodied who will go in there and do a much better job than me which I’m sure will happen.
“Hopefully they win enough games and we sneak into the finals and I can make an impact there because I haven’t made one this year.”
Swan will train “off-feet” for 10 days before resuming running, with an aim to return for Collingwood’s round-21 clash with Brisbane on August 16, the Magpies said on Thursday.
“We think Swannie can still be a strong contributor this season,” Collingwood’s football director Rodney Eade said in a statement.
“But, in the short term, it is clear that he needs to heal, get his foot right and reclaim that burst speed which has been such a feature of his game.”
Three-time club champion Swan has played no less than 21 matches a season since 2006.
Swan has averaged 30 possessions or better per game in the past five seasons, four times topping the league’s disposal count.
This year the figure has slipped to 25.4.
Swan’s setback is another blow for the Magpies who announced on Wednesday that defender Nick Maxwell would retire immediately because of a season-ending ankle injury.