FOOTy TIPs by Mr.D
FOOTy ROUND UP & TIPs
Last week of the bye round, drawn out over four long weeks as it is, and a great game in the West kicked it off with the Eagles proving again it’s either Dr Jekyl or Mr Oh-no-we-have-to-go-to-Melbourne. Home games may bring finals, maybe even home finals, but in the end the season is won or lost on the MCG. Geelong are not really looking quite a top four team, but then, none of the top four looks to have really cleared out from the pack in a season so even that even Brisbane can win a game…North take on the Saints and both can only be disappointed that it’s a game between 15th and 12th. Smashed by the Crows last week I’ll suggest a six-day break against a team coming off the bye should mean the Kangas can outplay, outlast and out score St Kilda
Waterhole near the Adelaide Oval image
The in-form teams of the competition are Richmond and Sydney, although a huge gulf of ten spots separates them on the ladder. If the Swannies are any hope of scraping a finals birth they’ll need to win this and, with that incentive, should overcome the Tigers but, if they don’t, maybe it just could be the tigers year.
All those new Power fans in Beijing will be expecting to beat another Queensland team and know from their deep knowledge of the game the Lions should be a gimme. Throw in a deafening g Adelaide crowd against a team used to a deafening silence from scant crowds and it’s the recipe for some flat-track-bully-action as the Power rack up a cricket score.Last week the Suns ladled a little more misery on Hawthorn, while Carlton staged a huge upset against the premiership favourites. One of these two will get two on the trot and at home, where the silence is golden, the Suns should triumph. And on Sunday, the quailing Bulldogs, missing the belief of last year, meet a team growing in belief. The ladder says the Dees should win and so does form and that’s how it should go with Melbourne winning a tight one.
It’s bye time for Adelaide and the Giants, top four teams still with a lot to prove. Mid table teams Collingwood , Essendon and Fremantle will enjoy the break before returning to their lottery style seasons with a mix of satisfaction and disappointment from Act 1. And Hawthorn players will enjoy not having to go to work this week, with their demise probably the biggest surprise of the season so far.
Major upset, with a Carlton win !!
Looks like the season is beginning to make a little more sense, around the half way mark. The question about whether the Bulldogs could do it again seems to have drawn a ‘no’. It’s hard to be s hungry as you were once you’ve eaten. And if you’ve got big Trav in the kitchen, you know you’re too many staff down to make a great meal anyway. Conversely, Sydney, who looked stuffed themselves early on, have got the personnel back and look like Sydney usually look – probabaly, if not definitely, good enough to go all the way. Now that it’s been done from outside the top four, maybe they can do it too.
Adelaide are still good, but far from invincible. St Kilda were looking good, but now jus look like a team that has improved again, but not enough. The self-belief must be starting to ebb.
Mondays game, between Collingwood and Melbourne, may tell us if either are really making ground. The Pies usually manage to surprise against the top teams while dropping the games against teams below them. Now they seem to be in a more stable rhythm of beating the teams below them and being beaten by those above. That’s a better grounds for moving up the ladder. Melbourne have been a mixed bag, winning and losing against the trend. It seemed impossible to countenance Nathan Buckley keeping his spot next year but a win, and I think a likely one, would switch his chances back to 50-50 and, let’s face it, even the Prime Minister would take that. For the Dees a loss will switch the optimism toward next year.
The Hawks and Suns have had similar years. Some good wins and some horrible floggings. The Suns are rising however, while the Hawks are falling back to earth. This should continue on the G.
Brisbane have been the bookies’ surprise this week, shortening against Freo this week. True, they didn’t lose last week but, then again, they didn’t play. Freo lost at home to Collingwood, but, improvement aside, they’re not good enough to be consistent, so that will happen. They should take a big stick to the Lions this week.
The Bombers we’re good against GWS, without looking like winners. Port chopped up Hawthorn and even if they Bombers can produce a better first half than the Hawks did (four points would cover that), they don’t seem to have enough going to beat the Power, even at home.
The Blues are still no good, even being twice as good as last year is still no guarantee of climbing much higher than seventeenth. GWS are number 1, with a bullet, and can be expected to perform a perfunctory execution come Sunday.
Did I miss something? Hawthorn held to 3 points to half-time, apparently their worst performance in their history. If giving up a seven-goal lead to Collingwood was the final notice that the era is over then this insipid performance in Adelaide is a Legal Demand. And Port? We’ll, their best is very, very good and given their last finals campaign, they could go a long way in a September.
Big game in the kitty litter on Monday, with both Geelong and Adelaide seeking to re-establish credentials. I think the Cats, but I’m guessing…
The Suns have been up and down more than Mark Harmon was in St Elsewhere, you know, before he became Gibbs… Anyway, they have a good chance to be up against West Coast, who can’t seem to get anything going when they’re a long way from home – and nowhere is further for the Perth boys than the Gold Coast
On a given day it seems the Bombers can do anything. Nothing given about playing GWS in Sydney though, except the long list of missing Giants. Even then, I don’t expect Essendon to come away with Jack.
Rules for Tipping #1. Never pick Richmond.
Rules for Tipping #2. Never pick North Melbourne
So who do you choose between them? Um, Richmond. Well, on form, they should win…
Collingwood have launched a review into the coaching department. Normally, that’s a death nell for the coach but, given history, it may be just to decide on whether to reward a record which has taken the Magpies from the top, down, down, down, down and down, with a three year or ten year extension. Freo should make sure the Collingwood board have something nasty to consider by putting some distance between the ‘pies and the eight.
Everyone else can take a week off. Which means that rule #3 – the Lions can’t win – is not required this week.
The last round of Autumn leaves the Crows at the top of the tree, with the Giants and Cats battling it out for the Glory. The Dogs, Tigers and Eagles are hot on their path, with the remnant of the eight Fremantle and Port Adelaide still in the contest. How long will this configuration last with the hungry snapping at their heels.
Is their any hope for the Lions as they languish at the bottom of the ladder waiting for the wooden spoon.
Cats may have an incredible record at home but, now that the ladder’s turning upside down, it’s not just the easy beats that play there. Expect the Dogs to strike a blow..The Giants still look pretty good and the Tigers not so much. After a couple of close ones Richmond should get a proper spanking in Sydney. Saints are still looking good, if winning ugly against Carlton last week.Sydney are only beating the cellar dwellers and that won’t change on Saturday.. Adelaide may be in terrible form but the Lions are simply terrible. Crows all the way. Collingwood snatched defeat in the dying seconds after maybe a Lou inspired performance last week. An emotional week but they should channel it into a win against a Hawthorn whose leaders are either injured – or traded. Essendon are up and down this year, as are the Eagles (and yet they’re still third?). It’s Etihad not the G but still not in Perth and I expect the Bombers to get the bacon. Melbourne delivered last week in Adelaide and North, who delivered the week before against Adelaide, didn’t deliver in Sydney. The Dees to deliver a win this week.. Dockers on the rise, Blues better but you wouldn’t say good. Freo too much at home.. The bye is with us for the first time this year and, although lacking firepower, expect it to be too much for the Suns this week. Port can enjoy a spell after thrilling a sold out (but strangely empty) stadium in China last week.
Big game in Perth and the home advantage should be enough, has to be if the Eagles want a top 4 finish. / Hawks maybe finding some leaders at last on recent form and I’ve said, or will say, enough about the ‘Kings’ of the jungle. Hawks to fly and Lions to remain at the bottom of the food-chain. / Saints are getting stronger by the week, maybe the blues are too but at nowhere near the same pace. Carlton could get seriously flogged here. / If any team should be charged up to play above themselves this week it would have to be Lou’s beloved Magpies. The Giants ARE a long way above them, but the ‘pies seem to match up well on them and should scale the heights for an upset. / Cats are sinking but the Bombers are more off than on. Comeback kitties this week. / If the Crows were starting to believe they were as good as everybody thought then they got an ice bucket wakeup in Hobart last round. Dees are brittle and will find themselves broken in front of a Coliseum crowd / Tigers are stumbling against good opposition but last weeks take-it-to-the-line loss to the Dogs should inspire them to beat the not-so-easy but still along-way-from-home Dockers / The Suns are shining and the Power has failed the past few tests, more of the same on Sunday /North have been ordinary until last week, when they turned on a clinic at long odds. Sydney have finally beaten someone but, being Brisbane, it’s probably still no one. Swans to stay in the cellar as the Roos continue to climb
Sainters may have hammered the Hawks last week but who hasn’t? Ok, the Eagles, but we all know how much that counts for away from the comforts of home. The Giants are a much tougher test, which they should fail miserably. / North struggle to win and the Crows struggle to lose. Can’t see that changing this week. / Collingwood vs Carlton – no one else likes them and they like each other less. I’ll bet Eddie’s lunch that the ‘Pies storm home at the G /Power vs West Coast. Adelaide is only half as far from Perth as Melbourne so we can expect the Eagles to be only half as bad away this week, which won’t be good enough – by half. / The Suns at home, expect a crowd nearing 10,000! Got my doubts about Geelong after last week but surely they can beat the Suns, or just give up this year. / The Tigers face a real contender again this week in the Dogs and can expect to be just as woefully exposed as pretenders. / Sydney have been awful but SURELY they can’t be worse than Brisbane. They should manage a much belated first win for ’17 / They tried to merge them in the ’90s but this year these two are on clearly different paths and the Dees should take the high road this week./ Dockers v Bombers in the west and the home team should continue their resurgence even if optimism is like a drug with the Black and Red fans.
Dogs aren’t quite sharp yet, if still winning , and Giants should have more bite. Hawks are back? Saints’ll beat them. Cellar dweller showdown. Swans to come up this week. No shock to see Power fry the improving, but still awful lions. Winless North. Suns not good enough against the big boys but good enough to beat kangaroos. Eagles a different team at home but Docker love derby and are set to continue winning form. Are Melbourne Gawn without the big man?Not this week, they like to beat the Bombers when the chips are down. Those who don’t like watching the Cats torture the bird before they move in for the kill should turn away now. Magpies no chance. But the big birds in Adelaide can even take a tiger by the tail.. Crows to dominate at home.
ANZAC DAY Seems the Power are running out of puff but it doesn’t take a wolf to blow the Blues house down. Winning confidence injection to reboot Port./ Dogs may be struggling to recapture their ’16 form but the Lions are going right on with theirs and won’t trouble the premiers. /The Suns have been shining but expect the Crows to rule the skies on Saturday. Hey GC fans, planning on going? The home team needs you both there. /Swans continue to slide as the Giants continue to rise in the Sydney match – oh well, at least the Swannies have supporters – or is that only if they’re winning? We’ll have plenty of chance to find out this year. Dockers have surprised and North have been serviceable but winless, which is actually not serviceable at all. Tough call to come back against the flourishing Dockers in the west. Dockers to win./Saints beat the Magpies last week but it’s not that hard. Cats beat the Hawks which doesn’t seem so hard either. Cats are shaping up as a force though and should triumph./ The Eagles don’t fly so high in Melbourne but the Hawks have been miserable this year. Their too proud not to put in great effort this week but still, there’s a reason they’re winless and bottom of the ladder. Another loss for the Hawks. /Tigers v Demons looks interesting with the Dees seeming to make a habit of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory and the Tiger fans getting cocky – are the players? With Hogan and Lewis back this week it’s a sterner test and one I can’t see the Yellow and Blacks passing. /Valiant acts against the odds rings true on Anzac Day but it’s hard to work out which of these two is on the hills and which is on the beaches. Much more evenly matched than for years, but the Maggies need to give their supporters something and the Bombers look to be struggling a little more each week. Magpies, but just.
EASTER Long weekend, ROUND 4
Eagles at home, Swans are winless and a long way from home. No breaking the duck this week; Dogs are too good to lose two in a row and the Roos not good enough to win this one; The Dees wasted the chance to be too far ahead to get overrun last week and Freo have had their win and don’t like to travel. Melbourne could probably win this one on behinds alone. The Giants will be up the pointy end this year, Port have been good but may be set to rethink early form after getting towelled up in Sydney. Two shock winners from last, Carlton and the Suns, one of them will actually string two together, probably Carlton. The Crows have been awesome and the Bombers may have started the season on fire but getting rolled by the Blues? they should cop a bird strike to the jets in Adelaide. The Magpie troops are ready to march, despite winning by just a point against Swans They can take more false confidence from knocking of the Saints who did notch one up last week – but it was Brisbane. The Lions (and questionable confidence) the Tigers fans will be booking their grand final seats after smashing the kids from up north. Expect Dusty to continue his showcase form. Anyone want to buy a pre-loved, classic tiger? Usually a season highlight when Cats dual with Hawks but, unless the Hawks can find a leader (and a few contributors) this week then this one should be a no contest outing for the kitties.
ROUND 3 Tips
Result round up
Shock and awe in round 3 last week, the shock coming from wins to Gold Coast, Fremantle and Carlton (and Hawthorn’s continuing collapse) and the awe from those two SA teams at the top. We’ll give the Doggies the benefit of the doubt – after their last loss, also to Freo, they aced the final series Keep a watch over Geelong and, maybe, Richmond, and keep faith with GWS. The rest you could almost throw a blanket over on early results.
Sydney put an end to Magpie premiership hopes and their black and white hoodoo in the first quarter of their round 1 clash last year. No such hopes this year but expect a similar result. Swans to get their season rolling and Magpies to write another one off. North almost cracked a win last week missing out by the smallest possible margin. They won’t open their account this week in a Hobart ‘home’ game against a tuned up GWS. West Coast are back in Melbourne but won’t win two weeks out of three. Expect the ever optimistic tiger fans to start making space in the pool room for the premiership souvenirs after they win their second. Two in a row for the Dees but with a disappointing Saints and Carlton performance, having big names ‘in the corner’ for indiscretions last week you’d think the Cats would win this one. Their big forward may have been told to try harder by the coach but at least he’ll be on the ground. One vs Two in Adelaide with both teams looking red hot. A toss up maybe, but the Crows tipped to get over the top.
Big changes at the dismal Dockers this week just shuffling the deck chairs as Ross Lyon’s Titantic runs up against the Bulldog iceberg. Heave-ho! The Bombers are playing like a team stimulated and the Blues continue to search for the defibrillator to jumpstart their decade. To much talent, too much passion. Easy day for the red and black…. finally the Hawks, they get to open their account up at Metricon where the Suns don’t shine. And the Long Night Of The Bored continues for another week on the Gold Coast. Finally…..the Lions and a Saints?? It’s in Melbourne,can the Lions surprise again? No!
Mr. D’s Tips were spot on a perfect 9/9
So if your anything like Moss or Roy, this is your weekly footy guide.
Battle of mediocrities at the G this Friday, two teams giving all, or nothing, I’ll pick Collingwood to disappoint their army and the Tigers to keep building hope: GF replay with Dogs to grind it in, rocky start for the Swans. On that note, with last week’s form you’d expect Adelaide to go 2-0 leaving Hawthorn at 0-2 and the natives are starting to get restless : In a game sure to draw almost no crowd, the expansion clubs face off in Sydney : A chastened GWS to slaughter the hapless/hopeless Suns : Moment of glory over, Brisbane can expect a demolition squadron to send them back toward the Carlton zone of the ladder: The Eagles at home, the Saints under pressure after disappointing round one, it won’t get better this week, Eagles by a mile. Geelong looked good last week, North didn’t. Can North get it together for four quarters? No! The two hard-luck teams of the decade, one’s on the way up, the other is Carlton. Dees by plenty. Port Adelaide surprised with a first up KO of the Swans in Sydney. Freo were about as good as last year, which won’t be nearly good enough.
What have we learned?
Well, it seems footy is more popular than ever with record crowds, except on the Gold Coast, where a lousy 12,000 turned out to watch GC and Brisbane, maybe due to footy franchise destruction, nothing new there…
Meanwhile, in the action
Richmond proved they were better than Carlton, which isn’t really proving much Collingwood showed that it doesn’t matter how often you get the ball, if you can’t do anything with it. Bulldogs know just what to do with it. / Port Adelaide could actually be pretty good by beating Sydney in Sydney while Sydney didn’t prove anything all. / Essendon once again, know how to channel emotion by knocking over a Hawthorn that didn’t look like it had quite factored in, how to cover the loss of three of its top leaders?(two gone and one in penance) / Melbourne went a long way to proving the pre-season hype was justified – St Kilda not so much. / Adelaide is a real contender by defeating a limp GWS who proved the premiership is no walk-up start for the AFL’s favourite child / West Coast proved that they can win in Melbourne – even if they only beat North, who, like Hawthorn, had decided their experienced leaders were surplus to requirements / Gold Coast revealed that they are worse than Brisbane, seems as though QLD didn’t care but maybe Carlton and Fremantle noticed. /Fremantle proved that they are, in fact, witch’s hats and Geelong proved that even after a long flight, they can run around witch’ hats