AFL Preview Round 9: Bombers v Cats

It’s Saturday afternoon footy at the ‘G, with the Cats travelling up the Princes Freeway to take on the struggling Bombers. Essendon have now lost 4 on the trot, but what is far more alarming is the manner of defeats. They look like a team with no direction or clear plan in place, they have a back-line that simply wants to win the loose ball without manning up and there is hardly any defensive pressure applied anywhere on the ground (aside from the impressive Devon Smith). These are all things a well drilled and experienced Geelong side can take full advantage of, and the Bombers will be up against it to give their supporters any reason not to burn their scarves (again).

Form

Essendon (WLLLL) – The Bombers have been absolutely slammed from pillar to post of late- and quite rightly so. Their effort levels have been deplorable and barely of VFL standard, and their gun recruits are so bad (bar the irrepressible Devon Smith) they are dragging everyone else down with them. Any danger of a member of the Essendon back six actually laying a tackle or applying some pressure? Or even simply manning up on a player?

Geelong (WWLWW) – It has been very hard to get a read on the Cats this season, but with wins against Collingwood, Port, GWS and Melbourne (all Top 8 hopefuls) we can safely say no matter their form they can always find a way to pick themselves up. Tim Kelly continues to go from strength-to-strength while the consistent offerings of Duncan and Menegola have lifted some of the weight off the shoulders of ‘Dangerwoodlett.’

Stats That Matter
– Geelong have won 6 of their last 7 meetings
– Essendon have still not won a 3rd quarter this year, with a percentage of just 41%
– The Cats have a percentage of 168% in 3rd quarters
– Gary Ablett averages 135 Fantasy points a game against Essendon
– Geelong have conceded, on average, just 53 points a game in their last 4 matches
– Dyson Heppell averages 38 disposals and 110 Fantasy points a game against Geelong
– Essendon have not covered the spread in 4 games

Betting Data

2018 Line: Essendon- 2-6; Geelong- 5-3

2018 Over-Under: Essendon- 3-5; Geelong- 2-6

What To Expect

The Wolf keeps expecting the Bombers to respond to the criticism and bring the heat, but that time has gone and Essendon are clearly in a rut they won’t be climbing out of anytime soon. Their transition from defence to attack is disjointed, poorly executed and selfish while the back line is as leaky as sinking ship- a metaphor to describe exactly where they are currently sitting. Geelong flexed their muscles against a gallant Collingwood last round, and you get the feeling they will be smelling blood in this clash. Wolfie is expecting them to keep the Bombers forward line, already bereft of any confidence, to a paltry score.

How It’s Shaping Up
Geelong by 34

Pump It Up Price Special: Ablett/Danger/Selwood/Duncan 135+ Disposals ($7.00)

Recommended Bets

Best Bet: Geelong 25+ ($1.70)
Value Bet: Essendon 61-75 Total Points ($3.00)
Player Prop: Gary Ablett 35+ Disposals ($2.75)
First Goalscorer: Stewart Crameri ($13.00)

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