It’s not often you come away from a 69 point win with anything other than excitement but Sunday afternoon was cause for little more than relief – especially given where some had suggested the afternoon might go. A loss to Gold Coast was a real possibility with Collingwood’s slump so bad and GC looking respectable the previous week against Essendon.
With the first two goals going to Gold Coast and Collingwood looking sluggish there was a patch there where some of us scratched our heads and wondered where this was going. It took Adam Treloar to blow the cobwebs off with a dominant first quarter. The boys took a small lead into quarter time and kept building. 69 points was a solid win but not enough % to get us out of 6th. This looks about where Collingwood will stay – we might make 5th. Top four can’t really happen unless Richmond loses a couple (and they have tough games) and GC smashes GWS in Round 23. So – nope, won’t happen.
The backline is still the big worry. Despite having to deal with big man Peter Wright and only letting through eight majors, it’s going to get difficult coming into finals against teams that have just beaten us – Richmond, GWS in particular. We still have Moore and Langdon on the injury list and we can’t get kids like Quaynor, Kelly or Murphy on the ground to cover for them and give them some game time ahead of finals. I can’t work out what Moneybags has done wrong but despite being our saviour in the finals coming back from an early season knee reconstruction, he seems to be out of favour. He might be looking at retiring but hopefully not to the Gold Coast.
The forward line looked pretty good. Mihocek continues to improve and with Cox out with an eye (!), could be our only tall next week. If we can surround him with Hos, Billy, Sidey and co – with The Gambler and Degoey to come back, it’s still a good forward line if a little short. It’s hard to know what to put there. Maybe it’s time to have another look at Moore there when he comes back. If Moore doesn’t recover for finals, the Pies might look to trade him in the off season and try to cover him with Kelly and Murphy. They might even make a play for Jon Patten who’s coming off his third knee and while it’s a risk, so is a key backman with endemic soft tissue injuries.
So off to the G on a Saturday afternoon to take on the Dees, who have under performed with the best of them this year but are always a danger. Where would you rather be than at the G on a Saturday afternoon? Rugged up and cold but win lose or draw, off to a warm Saturday evening pub for a couple to shake off the cold. Some off the MFC members have already booked the Range Rover for a trip to Hotham and will be watching it in front of an open fire with a cognac. – which isn’t completely unappealing either.
I’m not going to try to predict this one, it will be close and hopefully entertaining.
AFL 2019 Round 20
COLLINGWOOD 4.4 10.6 16.8 18.12 (120)
GOLD COAST 3.2 5.2 6.3 8.3 (51)
Collingwood: Hoskin-Elliott 4, Varcoe 2, Elliott 2, Sidebottom 2, Mihocek 2, Treloar, Brown, Cox, Thomas, Grundy, Pendlebury
Gold Coast: King 3, Sexton 3, Day, Martin
Collingwood: Treloar, Sidebottom, Grundy, Crisp, Pendlebury, Hoskin-Elliott
Gold Coast: Lukosius, Ballard, Miller, Swallow, Sexton, King
Collingwood: Cox (eye)
Gold Coast: Witts (knee)
Umpires: Dalgleish, Gavine, Glouftsis
Official crowd: 33,577 at the MCG