COLLINGWOOD is set to keep star forward – and "frustrated midfielder" – Jordan De Goey deep in attack after his five-goal haul against Geelong, despite his ambitions to move up the ground.
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De Goey returned to the Pies' line-up and put in a best-on-ground showing in his side's 22-point win over the Cats on Thursday night at Optus Stadium, kicking a season-high bag of five goals from 17 disposals.
>> WATCH DE GOEY'S HIGHLIGHTS IN THE PLAYER ABOVE
In what was clearly his best game of 2020, the out-of-contract goalkicker was excellent from start to finish, booting the first goal of the game and then three last-quarter majors to seal the Pies win.
The 24-year-old, who missed the Magpies' win over Hawthorn last week after being charged by Victoria Police for indecent assault relating to an incident in 2015, had been spending more time in the midfield earlier in the season.
However, coach Nathan Buckley said De Goey's powerful and explosive performance highlighted his importance to the Pies inside 50.
"It will be horses for courses. We were looking for a little bit of legs in our midfield late in the game because 'Jordy' was so dangerous forward of the ball," Buckley said post-game.
"That decision worked in our favour in both ways. 'Crispy' (Jack Crisp) got going and Jordy was able to finish for us. But [De Goey] and Jamie Elliott have given us that bite around clearance and centre bounce and we know they can do midfield minutes but they're both really dangerous forwards as well.
"Jordy's probably a frustrated midfielder. And he'd like to be there ultimately, and I think we see him in that capacity in the medium term. But right now, when he's kicking five goals in a shortened game in a low scoring year, we'll take that."
Buckley said De Goey, who flew direct to Perth last week after missing the Pies' trip to Sydney to face Hawthorn, was glad to be back with the group.
"He was up and about early," Buckley said.
"He's a fresh player having not played last week and I think he enjoyed being around his teammates when we came across last Saturday and we feel like we create a safe environment for our people, whether they're players or coaches or staff.
"I think Jordy's enjoyed having that support around him and he was happy to play his part no doubt."
Buckley said the decision to replace out-of-form tall forward Mason Cox with running option John Noble before the game was a "coin toss" call with Noble tasked with stopping some of Geelong's small forwards.
The Magpies have a 10-day break before facing West Coast next Sunday at Optus Stadium, with Buckley saying his charges "have earned a rest".