West Coast coach wary of Magpies - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

West Coast coach wary of Magpies

By Chris Pike 19/05/2009 04:29:44 PM Comments (0)

West Coast coach John Worsfold is wary of an under-pressure Collingwood ahead of their clash at Subiaco on Saturday.

The Magpies come to Perth to take on the Eagles with a 3-5 win-loss record after a disappointing loss to Carlton on Sunday.

And while Worsfold isn't sure which stars will return, he expects a fired up Collingwood team under his former premiership coach Mick Malthouse.

"I can't guess, but I expect a couple back at least. We know how good Collingwood are and what we need to be prepared to do to win this week," Worsfold said.

"Certainly last week they were hit hard by injuries, but we expect them to get quality players back. They were a side that was touted a top four side of the year, so we know what we are up against for sure."

Among the big-name Magpies to miss the clash with Carlton through injury were forwards Paul Medhurst, Alan Didak, Travis Cloke and Anthony Rocca, ruckman Josh Fraser and midfielder Dale Thomas.

All six are in contention to resume within the next two rounds.

Worsfold does see playing at home and the addition of former Collingwood skipper Scott Burns to his coaching staff as big advantages for Saturday night's game.

"For us playing at home is a positive. We have freshened up from last week and to not travel a couple of days out from a game is good, but how it affects Collingwood I couldn't answer," he said.

"He (Burns) has been pretty handy all year, but he obviously has a lot more knowledge of Collingwood players and the way they play, so we will use that in our planning."

Star midfielder Daniel Kerr looks likely to come back in for the Eagles, while Adam Hunter's potential return for his 150th game means Ashley Hansen won't be recalled with Josh Kennedy in good touch.

Plenty of focus has been put on young defender Eric MacKenzie's mistake late in Saturday night's game that led to Kieren Jack's goal that secured Sydney's win, but Worsfold is confident it won't affect him.

"Eric has worked out that we don't want him to miss targets from 25 metres away and the state of the game doesn't really matter," he said.

"We aren't more disappointed because it happened late in the game than if it did earlier, but if it gives the opposition a chance to rebound and score then we need to get better at that, and Eric is fully aware of that.

"Eric is a strong minded kid so it won't haunt him."

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