MCG, 1:45PM SAT
It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the Magpies last weekend, ahead by just 4 points early in the third term against the Brisbane Lions. Whilst that margin opened up and Collingwood finished with a 31 point win, we expect the Power to push them all the way to final siren in this match.
The Wolf ventured down to Olympic Park to watch the Magpies train last week and was surprised to see half of their training oval has been turned into a hospital wing. With Ben Reid and Jamie Elliott ruled out for the rest of the season the Magpies have serious injury concerns heading into the finals. They join Adam Treloar and Tyson Goldsack on the sidelines, although Bucks is hopeful but cautious that they will both return this season.
PORT ADELAIDE (LLWLL)
With the Cats, Kangaroos and Bombers snapping at their heels, the Power need to find some consistency…and fast. Like the Wolf’s mate who falls in love too easily, Port Adelaide have had their hearts broken in consecutive weeks with losses to the Crows (3 points) and Eagles (4 points). It’s not a stretch to think they will need to win at least one but more likely both matches to play finals football.
STATS THAT MATTER
- Paddy Ryder leads the Power for hitouts this season. Charlie Dixon was used as his back-up the last time he was injured. They are both out of this game. The Magpies are ranked 4th in the AFL for hitouts and with so many injuries to the Power ruckmen we expect the Pies midfield to get served the ball on a platter in this match.
- The Power are ranked 1st in tackles per game and they will need that pressure on the ball against a Collingwood side who are one of the best clearance teams in the AFL.
- The Power have played 7 games this season decided by 10 points or less. They have won 3 and all of those matches were at the Adelaide Oval.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Like a game of Operation everywhere you point in this match appears to have injury concerns. We’ve already spoken about the Magpies but the Power have Paddy Ryder (hip), Charlie Dixon (ankle) and Houston (neck) all out of this match. The Wolf thinks that this will be another close match with the Power’s injuries more significant. On that basis we think the Magpies will get the job done at the MCG.
HOW IT’S SHAPING UP
Collingwood by 25
Collingwood ($1.43), Collingwood -17.5 ($1.92), Collingwood 1-39 ($2.05), Total points under 152.5 ($1.88)