Nathan Buckley is not improving his Collingwood players and hurting his coaching future less than others because of his champion position, compatriot Matthew Lloyd said.
With the magpies beating near the bottom of the ladder with just one win, there is increasing pressure on Buckley to keep his job.
He has been in charge at Collingwood since 2012 and opinions are divided as to whether he can lead the club to another era of success. Collingwood lost to the Gold Coast Suns in the seventh inning Saturday at SCG.
The Sunday Footy Show Host Tony Jones, a Collingwood fan, said he would be happy Buckley saw the season and maybe the coach. He said there was no obvious replacement for Buckley.
Still, Lloyd felt Collingwood needed to be more proactive than that, seeking to unearth the next elite AFL coach.
“I don’t think you can say that, TJ, when you say, ‘Who else are they going to have? Lloyd said.
“Where did [Damien] Hardwick starting? Where was he when he started his career?
“You have to give someone a chance. Where did you get [Luke] Beveridge starts? Where did Clarko (Alastair Clarkson) start? “
Jones replied, “Who took over from Kevin Sheedy? (Matthew Knights) How did it go?”
Lloyd continued, “That’s right, but what I’m saying is, what are you doing? Just say, ‘Ah, I don’t think there’s anyone better out there.’ “
Lloyd suggested Buckley was not improving his players this year and was receiving much lighter treatment over his job security than Carlton coach David Teague.
“What you have to watch is who’s improving at Collingwood? Name me a player who has improved this year,” Lloyd said.
“You always have to ask yourself, are the players evolving? How’s our style of play? Our use of the ball? All kinds of things.”
“I think Nathan was a wonderful player, he’s a big name. He gets cut a lot more gracefully, in my opinion, than like a David Teague.
“David Teague doesn’t have the respect that Nathan Buckley has, so we all say, ‘Oh, I’d give Nathan another chance.’
“But they have to ask serious and difficult questions. They are one win and six losses after seven rounds.
“Yes, their roster doesn’t look so good. There were some shocking mistakes, with the Dayne Beams decision and the salary cap issues.
“So he had to deal with part of that, but I think they have to ask the tough questions. Obviously I would give him until the end of the year too but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if they were moving on. “
AFL great mate Nathan Brown said Buckley was abandoned by his club; left to fight for his career with a lower roster.
“A kick-off for a grand finale [win in 2018] and we keep talking about it, but it could be different, ”Brown said on The Sunday Footy Show.
“And then you get told, ‘We’re over the salary cap.’ I think Collingwood let Nathan Buckley down, because he can’t put a side he wants right now.
“Yeah, he might have had a say in who comes out, but it’s not his fault the players had to come out. If he still had his time, he would love to keep those players.”
“We know [Adam] Treloar, [Tom] Phillips, [Jaidyn] Stephenson; but then you are told that you are not going to be able to bring anyone in. They were after Jeremy Cameron, they couldn’t afford Jeremy Cameron, and we’re going to give up our top pick next year.
“So you’re crippled with what you can put in there. Now they’re playing kids, they’ve tried Darcy Moore back.
“But I think giving Nathan Buckley a chance to rebuild himself because I think he’s a really good coach.”
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