MELBOURNE coach Paul Roos has addressed the communication breakdown that stopped the Demons from picking up Collingwood spare defender Adam Oxley in the second half of Monday's game.
But he maintains it was the Demons' poor ball use that ultimately cost them the game and too much has been made of the inability of the team to get the job done on Oxley, who took 14 marks including eight intercept marks.
Thirteen of the 17 goals Melbourne conceded were due to turnovers and five of spare defender Daniel Cross's eight marks were intercept marks.
Roos said he accepted responsibility for the breakdown but his post-game reference to the players not carrying out instructions was a truthful answer to a question.
"I think sometimes people make too much out of it. I see the industry as pretty straightforward. I'll try to answer the questions honestly. Sometimes people like it, sometimes people don't," Roos said.
Roos said such instances were learning opportunities but he also emphasised that the coaches explained to the players that the real reason they lost the game was poor ball use.
"The main responsibility is to explain to the players why the game was lost and work on those areas that we need to consistently get better at," Roos said.
"If [they've] got one back even though we felt they should not have, clubs deal with that and you have to use the ball really well."
Melbourne expects Dom Tyson, runner-up in its 2014 best and fairest award, to return to the senior side after a best-on-ground comeback game in the VFL last weekend.
However, the Demons will likely take a conservative approach with Chris Dawes (calf) to ensure he has a good run in the second half of the season.
The key forward is set to return via the VFL rather than being rushed straight into the senior line-up.
"You just don't want to put the rest of the season in jeopardy or get an injury playing the tempo. Dom is more likely to play [AFL] and ‘Dawesy’ is more likely to play VFL if he is right to go," Roos said.
The Demons take on St Kilda at Etihad Stadium on Sunday, having failed to beat the Saints in the past 10 encounters between the sides at a venue where they haven't managed a win in their past 20 visits.
Melbourne last took the premiership points away from Etihad Stadium back in round 19 of the 2007 season, against the Western Bulldogs, but Roos said that record counted for nothing this weekend.
Roos said the Saints were currently in a similar position to the Demons.
"There is a lot of similarities between the two teams in terms of development and evolution and young players, where the clubs are at. We know we're going to have to play well because their best has been really good," Roos said.
Rookie midfielder Aaron vandenBerg will miss with a hamstring injury but Jack Viney is available despite copping a corked calf against Collingwood on Monday.