Season over: Dale Thomas. Photo: Getty Images
Collingwood has confirmed that the season is over for Dale Thomas after the star midfielder re-injured his right ankle in the VFL on Saturday.
Thomas has struggled to return to AFL level football, having played just five games this year. Despite that, the Pies had hoped he would return to play finals football this year.
He has re-injured the ankle that required surgery in May, and further surgery on the ankle is a possibility, with Thomas to visit specialists in Melbourne and Sydney over the next week.
Collingwood's interim director of football, Rodney Eade, said in a statement that the focus is on a full recovery for Thomas.
"It's obviously disappointing for everyone. Dale worked incredibly hard to play again this year and everyone was enthused to see him get close," Eade said.
"He felt strong and confident and to see him brought down again is a reminder of how tough the game can be at times. Right now, we know that the rest of 2013 is out.
''He is going to see several specialists over the next week or so and in terms of what, if any, impact there will be on his pre-season we will have to wait and see.
"A clearer picture of what the options are will emerge once he has been examined."
Thomas is in contract negotiations with the club and becomes a restricted free agent at the end of this season.
The Magpies also confirmed that Thomas' teammates, Jamie Elliott (hamstring) and Ben Sinclair (shoulder), will miss the Pies' Friday night match against West Coast through injury, but both are expected to be available for round 23.