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Pendlebury backs 'Pies for AFL flag tilt

AAP logoAAP 22/11/2016 Roger Vaughan

Collingwood captain Scott Pendlebury is bullish about their prospects, despite some tough circumstances, and says they should aim for next year's AFL premiership.

The Magpies missed the finals this season for the third-straight year and coach Nathan Buckley has conceded next year is make-or-break for his tenure.

Adding to the pressure that always surrounds Collingwood, it has been a dramatic off-season for their football department.

Football manager Neil Balme left for Richmond and replacement Graeme Allan resigned after he received a 12-month AFL ban for his part in the Lachie Whitfield saga.

But Pendlebury said the Magpies must keep aiming big.

"I've had it for 11 years that I've played here - it's always finals or bust," he said

"Any club that sits there and says it's not, I don't know what they're playing for."

He also backed interim football manager Marcus Wagner, who joined Collingwood at the same time as Pendlebury.

"It all happened over the off-season, so since we've come back Marcus Wagner has done a terrific job of explaining the whole program, how it's going to look for us," Pendlebury said.

"It's really been business as usual for us and I think most of the guys would probably say the same thing.

"We're just looking forward to getting stuck in and we trust Marcus in the job for now, that he's going to get it all done."

Pendlebury is excited by the arrival of Daniel Wells, noting what he did to Collingwood late in the season while playing for North Melbourne.

"We needed to win that game on a Friday night, we all thought he was going to pull out sick and he came out and had 15 touches in the first quarter," he said.

"He basically took finals away from us, so it's great to have him on our side."

Collingwood also recruited Chris Mayne from Fremantle.

"I don't think we've seen the best footy he has to offer and hopefully we can bring that out here," he said.

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