Magpies expect to learn from Cats - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Magpies expect to learn from Cats

By Sam Lienert 19/05/2010 02:39:01 PM Comments (0)

Collingwood defender Harry O'Brien says the Magpies will benefit from Friday night's blockbuster AFL clash with Geelong regardless of whether they win.

The second-placed Cats - who thrashed the Magpies in a preliminary final last season - will replace them in top spot with victory at the MCG.

But O'Brien said even if that occurred, the young Collingwood side would learn plenty from testing themselves against the club they still rate as the "benchmark".

"This is certainly a huge occasion and we do have a young team, I know we've played a lot of football together, but we do have a young team," he told reporters.

"Win or lose, we're going to learn from the experience and it's going to hold us in good stead for what we hope is a successful finals campaign."

"A win will do the world of good for our confidence, but a loss will also give us the opportunity to really reassess, against the team that is the benchmark, and make necessary changes."

O'Brien said he believed the Magpies were an improved side since their 73-point preliminary final defeat last September.

He said the Cats were one of the clubs they had tried to model themselves on to aid their improvement.

"We look to them to see exactly why they've been able to be successful and I think it comes down to having a successful team culture," O'Brien said.

"So in a sense we've tried to emulate a lot of things that we've heard from Geelong having a successful culture.

"That's nothing to do with on-field stuff, it's more to do with the way we treat each other at the football club."

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