AFL rule changes AFL 2019

Pete Roberts from Behind The Footy is sharing some of his great content with us for the 2021 AFL season. Pete spent fifteen years in AFL coaching boxes as an analyst. He now shares those insights with footy fans. Here’s his AFL Round 21 Preview for Friday game.

Please note these previews were written prior to yesterday’s last-minute shuffling of games!

🍻 Pub bets Watching a game and want an interest? We’ve thrown in the pub bet for that very reason… it might just be a smart way to play based on Pete’s excellent analysis!
AFL Round 21: Geelong v GWS

As the old coaching cliché goes, hope is not a strategy. In this matchup, it might be all the Giants have…

GWS failed an easier test last week against Port Adelaide on a neutral ground. They now come up against a better defence on a ground where the Cats have lost only once in the past two seasons. Crowd or no crowd, this road trip is a challenge for any side.

The window of opportunity for the Giants is small but familiar – defend first, create plenty of stoppages and hit the scoreboard early to find some sort of reward for effort. It’s the clear blueprint for most unlikely upsets this season. The Giants are at least equipped to give it a shot. Geelong won’t have any issue with the game becoming a bit more of a stoppage battle. Even though it’s a weapon for the Giants, the Cats still do it better.

The six day break for the Cats hasn’t affected selection much, outside of Isaac Smith being rested. The Giants come off a five day break with five forced changes along with resting Mumford and Hogan. They now have to face another top four side with Phil Davis, Tom Greene and Jacob Hopper on the sidelines and 3-game rookie Kieran Briggs in the ruck. Things just got even tougher.

Even though the Cats are prone to a few games where their scoring dries up, their past month gives us a reasonable form line to follow – they have played three teams directly around GWS on the ladder, conceding under 60 points in each of the past four games. Ironically it was last-placed North Melbourne who kept the Cats to only 62 last weekend. It wouldn’t shock at all if this is a low-scoring grind, particularly in the first half.

Ultimately it would take a reasonable spike in form for the Giants to put up a competitive total. The intangible is how much they lift once they’ve been reunited with their families during the week. Clearly, that’s not an angle we usually consider, but worth having in the back of your mind when you wonder if they have another level in them.

Comfortable picking the Cats unless the Giants can keep it close and pinch it. Tricky margin to predict given there’s a real threat of the game being locked down for long periods. If it’s a little more open, the Cats could do anything.

Pick: Geelong by 34
🍻 Pub bet
GWS First Half +17.5
$1.89 with TopSport

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