Round 12 AFL Preview

Thursday
Sydney vs GWS Giants @ Optus Stadium - 20:10
We finally get another "derby" when Sydney meets GWS at Optus Stadium in Perth on Thursday night. The Swans are currently in 17th position on the ladder after pushing through a season where the team has been decimated by injuries to top-line players. Unlike their opponents from down the Parramatta River, the Giants have won their last three matches, to be sitting in 7th spot on the ladder, where Collingwood is breathing down their necks. While the Giants only have a slight 3 to 2 win advantage across their past five matches, on form alone they should get a comfortable win here.
Greater Western Sydney by 29 points

Friday
Geelong vs Port Adelaide @ Metricon Stadium - 19:50

With Geelong having won four of the last five contests between these two teams, the ladder-leading Port Power will need to ensure they are playing to their best if they are to keep their win-streak going. After their big win over the Saints last round, the Cats will be a team feeling invigorated, and the Power will need to be wary of taking them lightly! The Power was involved in one of the better matches of the season in their win over the Tigers in Adelaide last round and will be feeling confident going into this encounter. With both teams having solid back and forward lines, this match will come down to which team can win enough ball through the middle!
Port Adelaide by 23 points

Saturday
North Melbourne vs Brisbane @ Metricon Stadium - 14:35

Not only did North Melbourne suffer another defeat last round in their loss to Melbourne, but they also suffered even more injuries, making them a team that has had enough players go down to fill their own hospital ward! Hopefully, Walker and Tarrant can make a quick recovery from their corkies to play in this match. The Lions got past the Bulldogs last round, to make it four wins from their past five, as they recaptured second spot on the ladder once again. Hopefully, for the Lions, Charlie Cameron's knee injury was only minor, and he gets back onto the field soon. With form and available players, you can't go past the Lions for the win here!
Brisbane by 42 points

Melbourne vs Collingwood @ The Gabba - 17:10

Earlier in the season picking this match would have been one that I would have entered in quickly and felt very comfortable with, but not so much for Round 12! The Magpies have been looking a bit wobbly across their last few matches, dropping two of their past three. During this time, the Demons have been finding new "connectedness" and ways to the goals, resulting in them having won two of their past three. If Max Gawn and Viney come back for this match, I am putting it down as a Melbourne win, but if not, I can see Grundy putting in a huge game to get his team across the line.
Melbourne by 9 points

Fremantle vs Carlton @ Optus Stadium - 20:10

Ably led by their talented captain, the Fremantle Dockers have won their last two matches, as they come up against a Carlton Blues side looking to recapture some of their earlier season form at Optus Stadium. When you add in that the Dockers have won three of the past five encounters between these two teams, and are playing on their home deck, this becomes a trickier match to pick. The Dockers will need the likes of Brayshaw, Wilson and Cerra to play to their peak if they are to match Carlton's strength through the midfield. While this is something they definitely can do, these players need to show they can do it every week of the season.
Fremantle by 13 points

Sunday
W. Bulldogs vs Adelaide @ Metricon Stadium - 13:05

The next team looking to ensure Adelaide continues their streak of "not winning" will be the Bulldogs when they come up against the Crows at Metricon Stadium. After their loss to the Lions last round, the Bulldogs should come out with their claws ready to get stuck into some Crows, but the Crows do have some quality inclusions for this match! As the Crows look to have Brodie Smith and Daniel Talia back into the team, they will be feeling more positive about the world. Even with the Doggies having lost their past three games, with Naughton back in the fold, it is hard to see them letting this one slip.
Bulldogs by 22 points

St. Kilda vs Essendon @ The Gabba - 15:35

At the Gabba on Sunday afternoon we have a St Kilda team coming off the back of a hiding at the hands of Geelong last round, taking on a Bomber outfit that have been up-and-down of late. Both of these teams have had some patches of quality games during 2020, but it is the Saints who, despite a poor performance last round, have been playing a more consistent brand of footy; St Kilda has won four of its past five matches, while the bombers are sitting in 11th place after winning two of their past five. Both teams have some solid motivation to get a win here; the Saints need it to stay in touch with the Top 4, and the Bombers will find the Top 8 that bit harder to reach if they suffer another loss.
St Kilda by 16 points

West Coast vs Hawthorn @ Optus Stadium - 18:10

The fourth-from-the-top team takes on the fourth-from-the-bottom team when the Eagles line up against the Hawks at Optus Stadium this round. In a battle between two teams on very different trajectories at this point of the season, will see a West Coast team that has won all of its last five games, facing a Hawthorn team that undid all of the good work they built up against the Blues the round before. While we know the Hawks can be a very dangerous team, they are currently playing like a group that has lost their mojo, much how Demons were playing earlier in the season.
West Coast by 27 points

Monday
Richmond vs Gold Coast @ The Gabba - 19:10

In the last match of the round, we have the Richmond Tigers up against the Gold Coast Suns in a match that sees a few of the competition's more exciting young players facing off. For the Suns, J. Lukosius, T. Miller and I. Ranking will be showing their skills, with the Tiger's S. Bolton, S. Stack and N. Balta doing likewise. Regardless of how these teams are going this season, they both appear to have a very healthy batch of youth coming up the ranks. But back to the now, for now... While the Suns have dropped four of their past five, they have come up against quality opponents. At the same time, the Tigers have won three of five, but have a healthy 5 to 0 win advantage in games against the Suns.
Richmond by 17

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