It may have felt like a destiny that was written in the stars, but Nick Daicos is bursting at the seams to realise his dream and play for Collingwood.
With rich football pedigree at the club, starting with club legend in father Peter and current ties to the Pies with brother Josh, Nick looks set to enter the Holden Centre as a highly-touted father-son selection. The draft sits on the horizon, and Nick can’t wait to be called out by the black and white.
“I’m super excited for the draft, I’ve waited for it my whole life and it’s something I’ve worked towards for so long, so to know it’s only a week away now is so exciting,” Daicos said.
“I know I’ll end up at Collingwood, which takes the nerves off as well.”
But just because Daicos’ family heritage runs black and white through and through doesn’t mean he was always going to be nominating to play for the club. While Collingwood were quick to express interest in the prodigious talent, the youngest son of Peter took his time to explore his options before deciding to accept Collingwood’s interest.
“I had an interview with North Melbourne about a month ago and haven’t heard from them since, so I don’t know if I did too well,” he laughed.
“There was a bit of thought, I had to assess the options. It would be stupid to only look at Collingwood, I had to look around and see other teams and possibilities, but ultimately I knew I was likely going to end up at Collingwood, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
“I’m happy to be in this position, I’m grateful Collingwood showed interest in me and vice versa, so I’m happy to be going there.”
It’s clear Daicos is a young footballer who has always aspired to be better than his peers. His desire to be taken as high a draft pick as possible belies the pressure that is already falling on him as he shapes to be one of the best draft prospects seen in recent years.
With his innate ability to create on the field and use his silky skills to destroy opposition sides, he’s still hoping he can nab the number one spot when the draft begins on Wednesday, November 24.
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“I’d love to be recognised and go as high as I can for the hard work I’ve put in, but at the end of the day I’ll be going to Collingwood and that’s where my attention lies now,” Daicos said.
“I don’t look into who gets the top pick too much, I know Jason (Horne-Francis) has been playing in the Australian academy and he’s a very good player, so I’m sure either way it falls, North Melbourne and Collingwood will get a good player.”
Many young players enter the draft period with a lot of nerves. Daicos is one of the rare few who can guarantee selection at a club, and is already sizing up what lay ahead when he eventually confirms his connection to Collingwood.
Having already been linked to the club for years through their development program, Daicos knows what to expect when he receives his locker at the Holden Centre.
“I’ve been there for a few years now, been lucky enough to go through their program,” Daicos said.
“With Dad and Josh playing there, I know a few of the boys and it feels like home, I feel appreciated there and can’t wait to get started.”
The wheels are already in motion for a spectacular debut season in 2022, starting with Daicos meeting new coach Craig McCrae.
After an hour meeting, Daicos is eager to get started with the Pies.
“I can’t wait to start playing with him, he’s a great relationship builder,” Daicos said.
“He told me, like any other player, I have to work really hard for my spot, I won’t be given it, I’ll have to work really hard for it.”
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