Collingwood deserves to be 0-2 after failing to "maintain the rage" for long enough against Richmond on Thursday night, according to coach Nathan Buckley.

The Magpies have had a winless opening two rounds for the first time under Buckley, with their forward half woes returning in a wasteful 19-point loss at the MCG.

While there were encouraging signs last week against the Western Bulldogs and periods of ascendency on Thursday night, Buckley said his team had nobody to blame but themselves for their early-season slump.  

"It is what it is … we would have loved to have won both games, but we didn't deserve either of them," Buckley said. 

"We're not happy with our performance tonight. There were a lot of things we didn't do that we rate, and we had a lot of players who were down.

"There was too much left to too few tonight … in the end we weren't able to maintain the rage for long enough."

Buckley's concerns were in the forward half, where the Magpies took safe options down the line rather than getting into more dangerous corridor positions before kicking inside 50.

"Our ball use was not what we trained. We were far more up and down the line than we'd like to be … (and) we just didn't play with the dare that we'd like to," the coach said. 

"It just wasn't what we planned for. It wasn't what we went into the game trying to achieve.

"To be honest, our structure forward of the ball relies on that."

Collingwood's forwards struggled as a result on Thursday night, with Darcy Moore kicking one goal and Alex Fasolo crashing back to earth with 0.3 after a standout round one performance. 

Apart from the return of Travis Varcoe from suspension, there doesn't appear to be relief in sight for the Magpies as they prepare for a Friday night clash against the Sydney Swans at the SCG.

Buckley said forward Jamie Elliott, who is returning from an ankle injury, completed a running session on Thursday but had not "knocked it out of the park".

"We're clearly missing just a bit of grunt in front of the ball and a bit of speed," the coach said. 

"Our speed is out with Elliott and Varcoe for different reasons and probably (Jordan) De Goey (hand) and (Levi) Greenwood (hip).

"They've got real grunt and toe to break the space or to win a contested ball in the front half. We're a little bit dour down there at the moment.

"We're whacking away, but you'd like to do better than that."