STEELE Sidebottom has not reached his ceiling yet, not by a long way.

That is the belief of Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley who saw the 23-year-old midfielder cut North Melbourne to ribbons during the Magpies' 35-point win at the MCG on Saturday afternoon.

"I personally believe that he's got a long way to go, that he's got a lot development and scope left in him," Buckley said.

"And that's my communication with Steele. He'll find me hard to please in regard to his performances because I think he's got a lot of talent, and there's still a lot of upside for him."

It was an interesting assessment by Buckley, immediately after a game in which Sidebottom was best afield with 34 disposals (25 uncontested), 12 uncontested marks, five inside 50s and six rebound 50s.

Buckley's comments pointed to a coach who wants to push Sidebottom from good to great.

"He's a very good player and when he finds the right attitude and effort, and he's really consistent with that, he just continually contributes to the team," Buckley said.

After a "quiet" – in his own words – start to the season, Sidebottom has worked closely with mentor and midfield coach Robert Harvey, going over extensive vision.

"The big thing for me is my intensity around the ball. I know it looks like I got the ball out on my own, it sort of sets me up the way I am around the contest," Sidebottom told

"The main thing for me is my intent and the effort to bring that intensity around the contest."

Starting on the wing, for much of the game against the Kangaroos, Sidebottom acted as Collingwood's 'plus-one' – which was a key advantage for the Pies.

His role was to help Collingwood outnumber North's forwards and then to provide a valuable link-up option when the Pies streamed out of defence.

Time and again Sidebottom roamed in space not even he thought was imaginable.

"I'm definitely not complaining about it, that's for sure," Sidebottom said.

"The previous weeks, I reckon I've been there but we haven't sort of looked enough. But today, I was lucky to get as much space as I did."

Twitter: @AFL_BenGuthrie