Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley says his side have the depth to deal with a series of setbacks, with Nick Maxwell injured and Steele Sidebottom reported.
Collingwood leapt into the top four on Friday night, but the AFL club’s depth will be put under the microscope after a series of setbacks.
Magpies coach Nathan Buckley was left counting the cost after trouncing St Kilda by 86 points at Etihad Stadium, with Steele Sidebottom’s rough conduct report capping a day of injuries.
Nick Maxwell tweaked his calf in the first quarter, although Buckley told radio station 3AW on Saturday that scans showed the strain was at the “lower end” of the scale.
The Magpies will still be without their defensive general for at least two weeks.
The 2011 Brownlow medallist Dane Swan (heel) and ruckman Brodie Grundy (back) were both last-minute scratchings.
A day before, Luke Ball was an enforced omission due to a calf niggle and, earlier in the week, defender Nathan Brown underwent season-ending shoulder surgery.
Buckley revealed Patrick Karnezis, recruited from Brisbane in the off-season but yet to make his club debut, had tweaked his hamstring at training on Friday.
“We’ve lost a few with soft tissue, but that’s footy,” he added.
“That’s life in an elite environment at the top level – you’re looking for that improvement constantly.
“That’s why we have 45 players on a list and we work to develop the depth of it.
“We’re going to need it (depth) next week … we believe in the depth of our squad.”
Buckley expected Swan, Grundy and Ball would all be available for the traditional Queen’s Birthday fixture on Monday week.
Sidebottom’s time on the sidelines will be decided on Monday when the match review panel assesses his hit on Maverick Weller that came after the opening bounce.
Sidebottom surged off the wing, leapt high and clipped Weller’s head with his elbow.
Weller underwent a concussion test and played no further part in the game.
“When you start judging severity by the injury, it makes it tough to argue against,” Buckley said of Sidebottom’s likely suspension.
St Kilda coach Alan Richardson believed Sidebottom was going for the ball and did not try to pick off the man slated to tag Scott Pendlebury.
“Both guys were going for the footy,” Richardson said.
“He (Weller) looks OK. He was in my meeting at the end.”