Scott Pendlebury will headline a series of big-name Magpies returning for Saturday's potentially season-defining match-up with Melbourne on Saturday.

Collingwood's captain has missed the past four games, starting with being a late withdrawal from the club's round eight defeat to West Coast with a quadriceps strain.

Coach Nathan Buckley confirmed Pendlebury would play, having done "everything in his power" to prove his fitness this week.

Darcy Moore and Ben Reid (both managed), Jamie Elliott (ear) and Will Hoskin-Elliott (knee) are also available, with Buckley and co. to make a call on team selection after Friday's final training run.

Jordan Roughead (concussion) and Brayden Sier (quad) are the forced outs from Tuesday night's win over Adelaide, after Adam Treloar (hamstring), Hoskin-Elliott and Isaac Quaynor (shin) went down the previous week.

Treloar has sustained some tendon damage and faces a race against the clock to be back in time for the finals.

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Press conference: Nathan Buckley

Hear from senior coach Nathan Buckley ahead of the round 12 clash against Melbourne.

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"We've got a really deep squad and we've shown that the last two or three weeks, to be honest," Buckley said.

"I think only the Swans have played more players than we have, and we've still got some boys there, Tom Langdon and Levi Greenwood, who are pushing for their opportunities late in the year. 

"A couple of our young fellas are yet to be able to make their mark, but we're really confident about our capacity to play a brand of footy that is going to challenge the best sides.

"We're defending really well and we know there's some upside in our offence and our ability inside to be cleaner and find a bit more time and space with ball in hand when we go forward."