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Wounded trio ruled out as Pies play it safe

Darcy Moore will not play at any level this week - AFL,Collingwood Magpies,Injuries,Darcy Moore,Travis Varcoe,Ben Reid,Jamie Elliott,Josh Smith
Darcy Moore will not play at any level this week

JAMIE Elliott, Darcy Moore and Travis Varcoe will be unavailable for selection this week as Collingwood continues to take a cautious approach with the respective recoveries of their injured stars.

Forwards Ben Reid (leg) and Josh Smith (hamstring) have also been ruled out from a return this weekend via the VFL or AFL according to Magpies football manager Geoff Walsh.

Elliott re-injured his hamstring against Geelong's VFL team in May, while Moore injured his hamstring against the Cats on the same day in round eight at the MCG and Varcoe hurt his hamstring against the Western Bulldogs in round 10.

"Elliott, Moore and Varcoe are all probably at least another week away. None of those boys will be available for this week but they're pretty close after this week. They'll start to trickle back in after that," Walsh told AFL.com.au. 

"Varcoe's probably ahead of those boys by a few days but none of them will play this week."

Walsh said the club had made a slight adjustment to the return dates of their injured stars, but denied the quintet had had any meaningful holdups in their recovery.

Elliott and Varcoe were doing a series of run-throughs as part of their conditioning programs at Olympic Park Oval on Monday morning as they look to step up their rehab.

"They haven't had any setbacks but when we said they'd be available after the bye there was still a fair bit of water to flow under the bridge," Walsh said.

"They are probably a week out from our initial estimations. There's no issues there though."

Elliott's 2018 season has been ravaged by injury with the high-flying forward yet to play a senior game after pre-season ankle surgery and twice injuring his hamstring this year.

Walsh said it was likely that all five players would have to work their way back through the VFL after being sidelined for extended periods of time.

"That's all circumstantial in terms of what's happening at the time," Walsh said.

"But to balance that they've all been out a fair while now so it's pretty hard to force your way back in to AFL level straight up regardless of who you are. Their lack of preparation probably counts against them."

 

In better news, James Aish, who injured the posterior cruciate ligament in his left knee against Richmond in round six, has started some running exercises and has responded well to rehab. 

Aish's knee was placed in a brace as part of his recovery following the injury, but Walsh said he had progressed significantly in regard to his timeline to return to the field.

"The conservative treatment of that injury was probably a good thing in terms of saving him from surgery," Walsh said.

"The docs and physios have been really happy since he's come out of that brace and he's doing a bit of work.

"Certainly in the next month we might be able to see some action with James."

Meanwhile, Tyson Goldsack is ahead of schedule in his recovery from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee but Walsh stopped short of declaring him a chance to return to the field again this season.

"He's probably been ahead in all his markers but when it comes to the final crunch, will we declare him fit to play? Well, that becomes another question," Walsh said.

The Magpies are set to face Carlton at the MCG on Sunday afternoon following their week off with the bye.