Who will win and why? The predictions and tips for Round 14

At the end of the season, we may look back on round 14 as a weekend that shaped the top eight.

Richmond vs Carlton is a classic eight point game that could have huge consequences either way, while Geelong gets a chance to boost their percentage against West Coast.

St Kilda must win a clash with Essendon, given how tight the bottom half of the top eight is and players like Port Adelaide, Gold Coast and the Western Bulldogs just need to keep winning to keep their top eight hopes alive.

All times AEST


Richmond v Carlton

Thursday – 7:20 PM – MCG

A ravishing clash awaits footy fans as rivals and final hopefuls Richmond and Carlton battle it out at the MCG.

Looking back on their last encounter which took place in Round 1, the Blues were able to run over a Tigers side that had chances earlier in the match to confirm their dominance.

With a seesaw game that only started a few months ago, you would expect this clash to become a close affair as well.

In that match, Richmond’s tall Jack Riewoldt and Tom Lynch stuck together on just three goals, but none of the tall Carlton defenders they encountered in Jacob Weitering, Oscar McDonald and Mitch McGovern will be there this time around.

While the Blues are fourth with a record of 9-3 and Richmond 7-5 outside the eight, it is the Tigers who come in as minor favorites after their Round 13 win at Port Adelaide.

While Carlton would expect to get the upper hand on the ball, the difference in the air could be the deciding factor in this clash, particularly in Richmond’s striker 50.

To get the job done, the Blues need Harry McKay and Charlie Curnow to at least match the impact of Riewoldt and Lynch, and that threatens to be an uphill task with a weakened Carlton defense as their immediate matchups set. †

It’s going to be a close-up, but this could be the week Carlton’s injury woes catch up with them.

Tip: Richmond with 10 points.

Lachlan escort

St Kilda v Essendon

Friday – 19:50 – Marvel Stadium

Essendon will be featured in another Friday night clash against St Kilda at Marvel Stadium.

With both sides losing their clashes in Round 13, they will be looking to put their best foot forward under the spotlight.

Despite being competitive, the Saints were outclassed by Brisbane last week, putting them right back into the pack battling for the top eight.

Despite the loss, St Kilda are going into this game as the resounding favorites – and rightly so.

Paddy Ryder and Rowan Marshall are arguably St Kilda’s most important players, their ruck dominance contributed to the Saints’ strong start to the year.

Sam Draper and Andrew Phillips will have to be at the top of their game to bend the duo’s influence.

St Kilda will be wary of what constitutes a dangerous game, with Brett Ratten’s side losing 75 points to the ‘Dons’ last year.

For the Bombers, their two wins in 2022 were a bull’s eye with ball in hand and the ability to play outside the defense, parts of their game that have failed them in recent weeks.

Peter Wright and Jake Stringer are about to play a big game, Stringer got a bucket from coach Ben Rutten after their loss in round 13 against the Blues, the match winner has to be at his best for the Bombers to win.

It’s just too hard to find many reasons to choose Essendon at this point and that remains true here, especially now that their last hope is over.

Currently St Kilda is sixth on the ladder with an 8-4 record, and St Kilda’s form should be too strong for the Bombers this year.

Tip: St Kilda with 29 points.

Hugh Fitzpatrick

Port Adelaide v Sydney

Saturday – 13:45 – Adelaide Oval

Hopes of finals in Port Adelaide are on the line.

The Power fell to 5-7 after losing 12 points to Richmond last week, meaning they are now two games outside the top eight.

Another loss would be a big blow to their final chances.

Port hosts Sydney (8-4) coming off the bye and important consecutive wins over Richmond and Melbourne.

Sydney is one of four teams with eight wins en route to round 14.

A win would put them within touching distance of the top four, while a loss would see them fall back into the pack.

The Swans’ recent record against the Power makes for some stark reading.

They have lost their last five matches and have not beaten Port in Adelaide Oval since Round 2 2015.

It is a huge game for both clubs with major consequences for the final.

Port Adelaide’s home form has improved since early season defeats to Hawthorn and Melbourne, but the Swans are playing the better football.

Tip: Sydney with 11 points.

Alex Zaia

West Coast v Geelong

Saturday – 4.35 pm – Optus Stadium

West Cost will receive Geelong on Saturday at the Optus Stadium after saying goodbye to both sides last weekend.

Adam Simpson would have been somewhat buoyed by the fight his Eagles showed when they last faced Adelaide on round 12, going down 31 points in the end.

On their last outing, Chris Scott’s Cats shook the Western Bulldogs by 13 points, putting them back in the top four, only to relinquish that position for not having played in Round 13.

With places in the four at a premium, percentage will be key and there’s no doubt that the Cats are eager to produce a booster similar to what they received for a 97-point demolition job from the Eagles at home on lap 6 last year. .

The Cats have an average win margin of 36.5 this season, saluting 35 points or more in five of their eight wins, blowing away the opposition in the bottom half of the standings.

The West Coast, which has an average losing margin of 62.3 points in 2022, has lost eight at the trot, while the Cats have won three in a row, and those runs are likely to rise to nine and four respectively.

The team that has played at home has won the last nine of these encounters, but that trend looks set to be broken with Geelong heavily favoring to win and do so comfortably.

Tip: Geelong with 45 points.

Andrew Slevison

GWS vs Western Bulldogs

Saturday – 7:25 PM – Giants Stadium

The Western Bulldogs’ path to the final has turned muddy. Last year’s runners-up are 10th on the ladder and four points plus a percentage of eight.

Their match schedule is as tough as it gets to make it to the final from here, playing against Brisbane, Sydney, St Kilda, Melbourne, Geelong and Fremantle in the build-up to home.

Given the above, they just can’t lose to GWS this weekend, but Bulldogs/Giants games have never been easier.

One of the game’s most heated rivalries, the Giants will do anything to ruin the Dogs’ run until September — and they’ll face each other twice.

The rivalry stems from the 2016 preliminary final, where the Bulldogs stunned the Giants en route to their premiership.

The Dogs have won their last two encounters, including a smashing at Manuka Oval last season.

GWS have some momentum from a big win over North Melbourne, they have the home field advantage and the motivation to drive a first nail in the coffin of the Western Bulldogs’ season.

Toby Greene scored four goals in the matchup last year and Jesse Hogan will be a headache given the Dogs’ problems with key forwards.

However, expect the Bulldogs to seize the opportunity and get the job done.

Tip: Western Bulldogs with 10 points.

Nic Negrepontis

Gold Coast v Adelaide

Sunday – 15:20 – Metricon Stadium

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After saying goodbye to last week, both Gold Coast and Adelaide have points to prove when they meet at Metricon Stadium in Sunday’s standalone game.

The Suns are real final contenders and have claimed several scalps to have them just a game out of eight. However, Stuart Dew will know that these are the games his side needs to win to be in action in September.

Of the 10 games remaining in their season, the Suns need to win at least six to qualify for the Finals, and this should be one of them.

They play a fast-paced football based on a dominant, consistent midfield and high effort across all lines. From what we’ve seen, that’s more than can be said for the Crows, who have occasionally fluctuated with their effort levels this season.

They broke a five game loss streak when they defeated West Coast in round 12, but Matthew Nicks will be disappointed by the second half drop off when they scored just four goals and gave the Eagles a sniff.

Darcy Fogarty will have to continue his recent form of form to stretch a subpar Gold Coast backline and the Crows will have to match it with the strong midfield of the Suns to have any chance of causing a disruption.

Forecast: Gold Coast with 23 points

Seb Mottram