Footy on my mind – round 20Posted: August 4, 2011
AFL Round 20
Friday, August 5
St Kilda v Fremantle
Saturday, August 6
Carlton v Melbourne
Geelong v Gold Coast
Essendon v Sydney
Port Adelaide v Collingwood
Sunday, August 7
Brisbane v Adelaide
Hawthorn v North Melbourne
West Coast v Richmond
Bye: Western Bulldogs
St Kilda v Fremantle, Etihad Stadium, Friday 7.40pm (EST)
The Saints are on a roll and back in the eight after an extremely slow start to the season early on. They’ve changed their game plan to be more attacking and with a higher intensity at the football, which is working very well. The Saints will regain skipper Nick Riewoldt from a one match suspension for this clash with the Dockers, who are desperate for a win. Can’t see Fremantle upsetting St Kilda but Pavlich must play forward and the midfield battles will be vital in the outcome of this match. The Dockers have been decimated with injury this season but a loss here could see them drop out of the eight, depending on other results.
St Kilda by 18 points
Carlton v Melbourne, MCG, Saturday 2.10pm (EST)
What a week it’s been for the Melbourne footy club – coach sacked, interim coach appointed, tanking revelations, club legend Garry Lyon stepping in to help run the football department, as well as internal issues with the board, football manager and CEO – the list goes on. Meanwhile, Todd Viney takes over as interim coach and his biggest challenge will be getting the playing group to re-focus on the clash at the MCG against Carlton. The Blues are going along nicely and another win will further reinstate their top four ambitions. Still no Jamison and Waite but the Blues are a better side then the Demons and should win easily.
Carlton by 40 points
Geelong v Gold Coast Suns, Skilled Stadium, Saturday 1.10pm (EST)
This match was due to be Gary Ablett’s homecoming back to Skilled Stadium for the first time as a Sun but a hamstring injury has ruled him out. Can’t see the Suns with much of a chance of upsetting this Cat line up. The Cats play very well at home and should win comfortably.
Geelong by 50 points
Essendon v Sydney Swans, Etihad Stadium, Saturday 7.20pm (EST)
Essendon’s injury list continues to mount and it could be the difference between getting a finals birth or missing out. If the Bombers want to play finals, then they must beat the Swans. Believe it or not, the Swans can push closer to the top four with a win here but I don’t think they’re good enough to claim a top four spot this season. The midfield battles will be vital in the outcome of this game but I think the Swans will lock down on the Bombers and grind out the win away from home.
Sydney Swans by 12 points
Port Adelaide v Collingwood, AAMI Stadium, Saturday 7.40pm (EST)
Port Adelaide face the might of the Collingwood army but in the wake of Chad Cornes’ retirement, expect the Power to lift at home. Last year’s reigning premiers are fantastic to watch and are in ripping form. Expect nothing short of a win against a struggling side in Port Adelaide, but if the Power can stay within 5 goals, that would be a good effort.
Collingwood by 30 points
Brisbane Lions v Adelaide, Gabba, Sunday 1.10pm (EST)
The Lions are straight off the bye and will be fresh, ready to go. Michael Voss has unearthed some talent that will hold them in good stead and they’re in for a big chance to claim a win over the Crows for the second time this season. The Crows though, will be confident heading up to the sunshine state after their Showdown win over the Power last weekend. Expecting a close contest but the Crows have a better side and the mature bodies to outdo the young Lion cubs.
Adelaide by 10 points
Hawthorn v North Melbourne, Aurora Stadium, Sunday 2.10pm (EST)
Despite a lengthy injury list, the Hawks have been terrific this season and I expect them to hold onto third spot heading into September. The Roos are still a chance to play finals but a loss against the Hawks would put a dint in their hopes for a finals birth. Can’t go past the Hawks in Tassie against the relentless Roos.
Hawthorn by 18 points
West Coast Eagles v Richmond, Patersons Stadium, Sunday 4.40pm (EST)
The Eagles have a top four birth to play for, while the Tigers won’t play finals after a very disappointing past month. The West Coast are extremely difficult to beat on their home turf and with the return of Daniel Kerr, the Eagles should win comfortably. The Tigers need to stay in the game for the full four quarters and be competitive or this could turn ugly.
West Coast Eagles by 25 points