Carlton will take another step toward September on Friday night at Marvel Stadium.
The Blues defied a crippling injury list to dominate Freo last week and look far too strong for an ailing St Kilda here.
Despite only having a single recognised key defender available, Michael Voss’ team restricted the Dockers to just 50 points.
That was Carlton’s fifth trip to Marvel this year, where they’ve now won all five games and covered the line in each, averaging 103 points for at the venue – ranked #1 in the league.
Meanwhile, the wheels appear to be falling off at St Kilda. The Saints have averaged just 54 points per game over the last month, ranked only above North Melbourne.
Their six-goal loss to Essendon two weeks back looks even worse given the Bombers’ loss to lowly West Coast last Friday. They backed that loss up with just 32 points against Sydney, their lowest ever score against the Bloods.
St Kilda’s finals chances are suddenly hanging by a thread and are likely to be dealt another blow on Friday night.
Adam Cerra returns to bolster Carlton’s star midfield while Jacob Weitering remains an outside chance to play and take on Max King. Even without their gun defender, the Saints have the AFL’s worst scoring from inside 50 percentage since Round 10 so aren’t playing like a team to take advantage of a diminished Blues defence.
The Blues demonstrated a game plan to overcome their long injury list and a top four contender last week. On form, the Blues have to be the bet to cover a modest line.
Who will take home the AFL’s top individual award? Check out our weekly AFL Brownlow Predictor for this week’s leaderboard and our tips.
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Sam Walsh has returned to his best form, averaging 34 disposals a game in his last five games. Sam Docherty is racking up bulk pill behind the ball, clearing 30 touches in his last four games.
Expect the underrated Dougal Howard to take Harry McKay which should leave Coleman Medal leader Charlie Curnow to run riot. He’s bagged 4+ goals in his last three visits to Marvel.
The Blues’ average winning margin at Marvel is 31 points this year. If the Saints of the last fortnight show up on Friday night, a blowout is on the cards. Around $5.00 for a 40+ point win certainly looks good value as well.