Jordan De Goey celebrates a goal during Collingwood's clash against Sydney in round one, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

COLLINGWOOD midfielder Jordan De Goey will return against Gold Coast on Saturday, but recruit Lachie Schultz has been ruled out and Isaac Quaynor is in some doubt for the trip to Queensland. 

De Goey has only played once since Anzac Day – in round 10 against Adelaide – but the 28-year-old has now recovered from the groin strain and abdominal tear that has sidelined him for much of 2024 to date. 

The Magpies will regain veteran Scott Pendlebury and key forward Brody Mihocek for the clash at People First Stadium, but in-form small forward Schultz has been ruled out after missing both sessions this week due to gastro. 

"Lachie Schultz won't play. He has had gastro pretty bad this week, so he is just not going to get up to play," Collingwood coach Craig McRae told reporters on Thursday. 

"Quaynor has the man flu. He is progressing well, so we are anticipating he plays this weekend."

Collingwood will travel with at least one carryover emergency – Ed Allan filled that role in round 14 as coverage – with the VFL side facing Essendon at Windy Hill on Saturday afternoon. 


With Schultz ruled out, Joe Richards trained fully on Thursday to push his case to be picked for the first time since suffering a fractured foot in the draw against Fremantle in round 11. 

"Joey has come fast," McRae said. "He literally was three of four weeks away and we didn't think he would come on this quick. He has trained really well and put his hand up, so it will be an interesting conversation (at match committee)."

McRae said All-Australian Nick Daicos is wanting to emulate the target of fellow Brownlow Medal contender Errol Gulden by trying to play 100 per cent game time in the closing block of the home and away season. 

Gulden played 98 per cent of the Sydney Derby last weekend and has spent at least 95 per cent time on ground in five other games so far this season, while Daicos played 93 per cent in the come-from-behind win over North Melbourne but has hovered in the high 80s for most of 2024.

Nick Daicos celebrates Collingwood's win over North Melbourne in round 14, 2024. Picture: Getty Images

"You look at Errol Gulden, he is playing 100 per cent game time at the moment and Nick is asking why he can't? 'Let me play 100 per cent'," McRae said. 

"He is not playing far off that. He has an exceptional engine and he can run all day, and he is running harder at the end than he is at the start. 

"We moved him forward in the second half (against North Melbourne) and he kicks two goals and sets up three. He is just such a talent. Ideally you just play him where the game needs him. He is one of those players that with a few guys coming back, we can choose to do a few different things with Nick."

Key forward Dan McStay completed another full session on Thursday and is mounting a case to be ready to return at some stage and level next month, after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament on December 1 last year. 

Daniel McStay celebrates with Jamie Elliott after kicking a goal during the match between Collingwood and Brisbane at Marvel Stadium in round 23, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

McRae said the 28-year-old can be a late-season wildcard for Collingwood, just like Callum Mills at Sydney and Will Ashcroft at Brisbane. 

"He is into full training now, and in fact, he has been consistently training for a while now. [High performance manager] Jarrod Wade is keeping that date close to his chest, he is not telling anyone. Clearly by watching him train it is getting closer. He is running on top of the ground, he is doing competitive work. He is not too far away I wouldn't have thought," he said. 

"At his best, Dan is an integral part of our forward line. Scott Selwood and the forwards have been incredible really. Finding avenues to score through unconventional ways. To have a marking presence there, we just haven't had it. Someone like Dan, it is exciting to think about him being available at some time."