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The Carlton Blues and Collingwood Magpies are two of only four winless teams left in the AFL after two weeks, but barring an unlikely draw one of them will get out of that group tonight.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Friday night, starting from 7:50pm AEDT.
Both of these teams have made two changes ahead of tonight’s match.
Carlton brought Cam O’Shea, formerly of Port Adelaide, in for his debut last week, but his performance was not quite up to scratch and he’s been dropped back to the VFL.
They’ve also lost Ciaran Byrne to injury which will mean a bit less run out of the backline, but the good news for them is that their No. 1 ruckman Matthew Kreuzer is back, as is Matthew Kennedy.
Kreuzer’s absence was a major factor in last week’s loss to the Gold Coast Suns as it allowed Jarrod Witts to run wild against some pretty sub-standard competition at times.
However another telling factor (which you may have picked up on) was Tom Lynch kicking eight goals, and that being the case it’s a bit of a surprise that Liam Jones has kept his spot.
Given that Jacob Weitering is being moved back to defence this week, Carlton will be fielding a backline of four 190cm players against a forward line that only contains two.
That is of course Ben Reid and Mason Cox, who are back in the side this week after missing Round 2 through injury and suspension respectively.
That might make you worry that the Blues could get done in by a quality small forward, but luckily for Carlton Jamie Elliott is still injured and Alex Fasolo has inexplicably been left on the sidelines as an emergency.
Collingwood’s two outs are both injury-forced – Darcy Moore and Tim Broomhead both had to leave mid-match in Round 2. Moore will be gone about a month, Broomhead’s season is over due to a broken leg.
I reckon Carlton will bounce back from last week’s uncharacteristically poor effort and give Collingwood something of a surprise this evening.
Carlton by 12.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match between the Carlton Blues and the Collingwood Magpies in Round 3 of the 2018 AFL season at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Friday night, starting from 7:50pm AEDT.