Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley is simply ‘looking forward to the challenge that Wednesday presents’ ahead of his team’s all-important ANZAC Day clash against Essendon.
The infamous ANZAC Day game commemorates the battlefield larger than football, where both clubs unite to pay their respects to our country’s past and current war heroes.
“It’s an occasion for all Australians. It’s an opportunity lost if we don’t reinforce the reason that the day exists and the good fortune we have, to be able to chase our dreams in this country, given the service men and women that have fought and the families that have been impacted,” he said.
When ask what the ANZAC Day clash means to his club, Buckley noted the importance placed on the day and the players who play in remembrance.
“It’s generational. Something we acknowledge each year and try to educate our players on and staff around.”
Collingwood, who are sitting on two wins and two losses, are still preparing to play the way they have planned against an evenly-placed Bombers side on one of the biggest days on the football calendar.
“We’re fully focussed on playing our brand and making sure we bring an intent to the game that reflects the way we want to go about it,” Buckley said.
However, Buckley acknowledges that Essendon are no easy beat and their game style is one the Pies are eager to control.
“They’ve got a lot of speed, a lot of pace and are really hard at the ball. Those elements are ones we’ll have to match and surpass if we want to get the game on our terms,” he said.
Collingwood take on Essendon at 3.20pm on April 25 at the MCG. They will then return to the MCG four days later to take on reigning premier Richmond on Sunday.