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Nathan Buckley concedes Collingwood were 'slaughtered'

A rough night: Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley.

A rough night: Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley. Photo: Getty Images

Indecision, poor kicking, awful goal kicking, an inexperienced side playing against a very, very good opponent. They were all reasons for Collingwood being slaughtered “pantsed” over three quarters coach Nathan Buckley said.

Collingwood was “slaughtered” by 70 points after kicking a horrendous 5 goals 16 – and five more out on the full – in a woeful display of goal-kicking that capped a dreadfully fumbly night with the ball.

Collingwood’s scoreline was their equal poorest conversion rate since 2007 – the other two occasions they kicked as poorly were also against Ross Lyon-coached teams.

“We did not take our chances and we could not have spent more time on that over the summer in relation to our set shot goal kicking and conversion and quite easily we could have been three or four goals up at quarter time and that has a massive difference,” Buckley said.

Collingwood led the match by a point at quarter time but conceded 12 unanswered goals and booted only three goals in three quarters as they submitted to aside that was cleaner, stronger and more efficient than they were.

“We played the grand finalist from last year and got pantsed in the last three quarters,” Buckley said.

“We had some chances but our ball handling was woeful after quarter time. All the numbers in contested possession and clearances were even but we were not able to hold the tide back.”

Buckley said that once Fremantle scored a couple of goals in the second quarter his players lost their nerve and became confused and tentative about whether to go forward or back and in the end got caught in between.

Collingwood fielded a young side with injuries to a number of key players – notably Ben Reid and Jesse White - and Buckley said with two weeks break until the next match a range of players would be available to come into the team. Both Reid and White will be recovered from calf soreness to play Sydney.

Jarryd Blair, Sam Dwyer, Kyle Martin, Josh Thomas all returning from injury will play VFL on Saturday along with others in contention to come into the side like Ben Hudson, Quinten Lynch and Lachie Keeffe

“We have still got a lot of blokes outside of this 22 who would lay claim to being in the best 22 and when you see a performance like that it can shift pretty quickly,” Buckley said.

“It has to put heat on selection. When there is such contrast in the way you perform from quarter to quarter it puts heat on everyone.

“We will more than likely sit at the bottom of the ladder with our percentage at the end of round one but we will be four points away from the top team. It is a loss. It is a poor loss but you don’t wrap the season up.”

Collingwood captain Scott Pendlebury said Fremantle had shown Collingwood the difference between working hard defensively and working smart defensively.

“I think we were prepared to roll back hard but they forced us to turn the ball over, they shutdown down the line so you try to hit a corridor kick and you turn that over and they are open. They are probably not working harder, they are working smarter than us,” he said

“We just got shown pretty quickly how high the standard is. It’s a quick reminder there is a lot of work to be done.

“They forced us into turnovers into rushed decisions, we were trying to do that but they kept their composure better than we did.”

Pendlebury reasoned that despite the loss he felt the gulf between the side was not as wide as the scoreline suggested, with Collingwood having significant room for improvement.

“There’s no panic, it’s only the start of the journey, if we dish that up again next week then there is panic but they are on 4 points we are on nil,” he said.

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Thu, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
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Round 3
Fri, 04 AprTimes shown AEDT
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Round 4
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Round 6
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Round 7
Fri, 02 MayTimes shown AEST
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ADE 67 vs MEL 70 Report Stats
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Round 8
Fri, 09 MayTimes shown AEST
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Round 9
Thu, 15 MayTimes shown AEST
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Round 10
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Round 11
Thu, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
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Round 13
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Round 14
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Round 15
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GWS 72 vs ADE 140 Report Stats
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MEL 34 vs FRE 97 Report Stats
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Round 17
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Round 20
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Round 21
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Round 22
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Round 23
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Hawthorn 22 17 5 0 140.78 68
Geelong Cats 22 17 5 0 113.77 68
Fremantle 22 16 6 0 130.40 64
Port Adelaide 22 14 8 0 129.92 56
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