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North Melbourne: Eighth
North Melbourne: 10-6
Last five match results
North Melbourne: LLLLL
Collingwood: $2.48 with CrownBet.com.au
North Melbourne: $1.54 with CrownBet.com.au
Collingwood: +10.5 ($1.87 with Sportsbet.com.au)
North Melbourne: -10.5 ($1.87 with Sportsbet.com.au)
WHERE did it all go wrong for North Melbourne?
Having cruised to the top of the ladder with nine straight wins to open the 2016 AFL season, the Kangaroos lost their fifth consecutive game on the weekend with a pitiful effort against Port Adelaide.
They come up against a Collingwood side that pushed premiership fancy Adelaide all the way on the weekend, but ultimately fell short.
The Magpies are all but out of the AFL finals, but they could cause some real damage to top-eight teams in the run home – starting with North Melbourne.
With so much to play for, the Kangaroos should have come out breathing fire against Port.
But they did anything but.
Port kicked the first goal in the first minute, a contentious rushed-behind free kick against Michael Firrito setting the tone for the night.
The Power kicked the first six goals of the match, while holding North goalless in the opening term.
The Kangaroos did fight back, but never really looked like snatching it, Port going on to win 16.9 (105) to 10.17 (77).
Inaccurate kicking proved costly for the Kangaroos, but they were beaten at the contest and Todd Goldstein, once the best ruckman in the competition, was smashed by part-timer Jackson Trengove.
Ben Brown continued his good form with three goals, a feat emulated by Lindsay Thomas, while, two weeks out from breaking the AFL’s all-time games played record, Brent Harvey had a monster. Two goals to go with his 29 disposals made him the Roos best, but there were, again, too many passengers.
A side that sports the likes of Andrew Swallow, Ben Cunnington and Jack Ziebell prides itself on being hard at the footy, yet they are dead last in contested possessions over the past six weeks – a staggering statistic for a would-be finals fancy.
Drew Petrie had yet another stinker, but it appears his spot is safe in the side after Jarrad Waite pulled up sore once again on his return from injury.
Brown and Harvey are about the only two players you could say had any sort of form going into this game, although Nick Dal Santo managed to snare 28 disposals after three weeks of under 25.
Brown is $10 at Sportsbet to boot the first, narrowly ahead of Thomas at $11. He has become the club’s number one target, thanks to Petrie’s horrible form and Waite’s run of injury, and the curly-haired big man has done it well.
The Roos would prefer him to be the third tall, but he is the midfielders’ target now and that means he is every chance of kicking the first goal of the game on Friday night.
We reckon Dal Santo might just be playing for his career and, if he is desperate, should string together some solid games in the back end of the season. He is $1.53 to claim 25 or more possessions and we think that is a solid bet.
Harvey is set to play game number 426 against the Pies, equalling Hawthorn legend Michael Tuck’s AFL record.
He’s an ageless wonder. At 38 years old he has 27 goals in 16 games – on pace to remarkably beat his career mark of 36 in a season – in campaign number 21.
Remarkable stuff. He is more than worth a flyer at $14 for the first goal in this match.
The Pies didn’t turn up until quarter time last weekend and you can’t do that on the road against the Crows, but they certainly did themselves no shame in their effort after the first break.
They kicked five goals to three in the second quarter and halved the third with three goals, before falling away a little to go down by 28 points.
Travis Cloke, Levi Greenwood and Jack Crisp booted two goals each to lead the Pies, while Brodie Grundy continued his meteoric ascension into the upper echelon of AFL ruckmen.
His effort against Sam Jacobs – 23 disposals, 10 marks, 32 hit outs and five tackles – is as good as you will see and Pies fans will be hoping that is a glimpse of the future.
There were some big numbers from the Magpie army. Adam Treloar had 36 possessions, hard man Taylor Adams 34 and captain Scott Pendlebury 30.
Adams has put his 17-disposal stinker against the Western Bulldogs behind him with 31 and then 34 disposals, and we reckon $1.83 to make it three in a row with 30 or more is good value against the decimated Roos. They will be putting time into Pendlebury, Treloar and Sidebottom, leaving Adams free to run rampant.
Another tough nut in Jack Crisp is our left-field pick for first goalscorer. He is a massive $36 outsider, but coach Nathan Buckley seems to have given him a bit of licence to go forward and try to impact the scoreboard.
If you want to go a little safer, young gun Darcy Moore is $13 and then there is always Cloke at $10.
Magpies vs. Kangaroos player props predictions
Odds provided by Sportsbet
- Jack Crisp – $36
- Ben Brown – $10
- Brent Harvey – $14
- Taylor Adams to get 30 disposals or more – $1.83
- Nick Dal Santo to have 25 disposals or more – $1.53
Match result: Collingwood Magpies win ($2.48 with CrownBet.com.au)
Line betting: Collingwood Magpies +10.5 ($1.87 with Sportsbet.com.au)
The Pies will be licking their lips in this one. The last time these two sides met, North Melbourne squandered a 39-point lead, going down by 17 points, 17.10 (112) to 14.11 (95). Collingwood won’t have match-winners Jamie Elliott (five goals) or Dane Swan (32 disposals) but, with the Roos gutted by injury and poor form, they probably don’t need them. The Pies are not certainties, by any stretch of the imagination, but on history, form and fitness, you simply cannot tip the Roos. Pies by a couple of goals, with Pendlebury to run rampant.
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