Jordan De Goey is set to return to AFL action for Collingwood’s clash with Gold Coast, while Geelong is welcoming back Patrick Dangerfield for his first match in six weeks.
- De Goey will play his first match for the Magpies since before their bye round
- The Magpies say De Goey has “trained with high energy”
- Dangerfield has returned from a niggling calf injury
De Goey returns after a short period away from the game following the fallout from his ill-fated Bali trip.
“Jordy trained really well [on Thursday[ and he trained with high energy,” Collingwood coach Craig McRae said.
“I caught up with him on Monday and he seemed like he was in a good place, he was ready to come back and deal with everything that was going on.
“He comes back full of energy.”
De Goey apologised for his “disrespectful” conduct during the Magpies’ bye round after vision of him partying in Bali was posted to social media.
The 26-year-old also revealed he had been diagnosed with ADHD and vowed to make changes to ensure he stayed out of trouble.
The apology, issued via the club, came after De Goey hit out at media outlets on his Instagram page for “the relentless pursuit and persecution of athletes”.
McRae has addressed the situation with De Goey, and on Thursday he dismissed reports the player had been unhappy with the club’s handling of his latest off-field saga.
“I met with him and his manager, and to be honest it was about moving past to be able to then step forward,” McRae said.
De Goey is out of contract at the end of the season and McRae will not discuss the midfielder-forward’s long-term future publicly, but has issued simple instructions for the rest of the Magpies’ season.
“I want him to get into it and be himself, to be honest — not only in his football but even the stuff outside of football as well,” McRae said.
“He’s been doing a lot of work on that and we’ve seen growth, and clearly he’s got more to do.
“I’m not going to talk about anyone’s contract, not just Jordy’s, but I do talk about what the next 10 weeks looks like.
“It’s about just trying to perform at his best, give to the team and be a good teammate.”
Collingwood is hopeful veteran Jeremy Howe (stomach virus) will only miss one match as the Magpies chase a finals berth.
They sit seventh on a congested ladder with a 9-5 win-loss record, one win off second spot and one clear of 10th place.
Cats boosted by Dangerfield’s inclusion
Dangerfield is back for the Cats’ Saturday night home match against lowly North Melbourne after battling a niggling calf injury.
The 2016 Brownlow medallist will be joined back in the line-up by forward Gary Rohan, who was a late withdrawal against Richmond last week.
Geelong has opted to rest captain Joel Selwood for the second time this season.
Selwood will be joined on the sidelines by Tom Stewart, who was suspended for four matches for his hit on Richmond’s Dion Prestia in the Cats’ thrilling three-point win over the Tigers on Saturday night.