The Roar
The Roar



The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions: Round 10

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19th May, 2021
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After last week, you should be starting to get more of a feel for this season.

It’s taken a long time to get settled, but last weekend looks to have been the one where the layers started to form. Hopefully, it’s smooth sailing on the tipping front from here!

Nobody sailed smoother than Liam Salter last week, whose bold predictions of Bulldogs and North Melbourne upsets helped him score the first perfect nine of the season. Well done old sausage.

That super score has catapulted him into first place on the Roar’s AFL expert tipping panel with 54 points. Dem Panopoulos’ six means he falls into second place with 53, while my score of seven was a good return and we’ll leave that topic there.

Stirling Coates

Brisbane, Carlton, Geelong, Melbourne, Western Bulldogs, Fremantle, West Coast, Port Adelaide, Essendon

We’ve got a genuine beauty to kick things off this weekend; a qualifying final rematch and a potential grand final preview between two genuine contenders.


I had Brisbane as my pre-season flag favourite and it looks like their wobbly start has helped them fly under the radar and just play ripping footy. History tempts us to look at their demolition of the Suns last Saturday as classic Gold Coast futility, but I reckon it was more an indicator of how much the Lions are flying.

After that, most of Round 10 looks to be fairly safe tipping.

Carlton have been woefully disappointing in 2021 and deserve all the flak they’re copping, but there’s a difference between being disappointing and being plain bad. The Blues haven’t been bad, whereas the Hawks certainly have, and will get up by five goals.

Everyone’s jumping on Geelong to rewrite the record books against Gold Coast this weekend but, while I haven’t hesitated in tipping the Cats, I reckon the Suns will put in a much more competitive effort than people are predicting. Home side by 19 points.

Nobody really looks forward to playing the Crows at the Adelaide Oval, but the Demons have a surprisingly strong record at the ground and should be able to move to 10-0.

The Saints play the exact style of game that troubles the Western Bulldogs the most, but their execution has plummeted since last season so I can’t, in good faith, back them. The Bulldogs made it crystal clear last Saturday night they’ll be there at the pointy end and should exact sweet revenge for last year’s elimination final heartbreak.

Josh Bruce of the Bulldogs is challenged Rowan Marshall of the Saints

(Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)


Saturday night’s second match is arguably the toughest to tip all week. Sydney are in no doubt better form than Fremantle, but have a dreadful record away against the Dockers. In fact, I’d put good money on home ground advantage being the biggest factor in Freo-Sydney clashes than just about any other combination of teams. Dockers to nab the points.

As much as I don’t trust West Coast’s form away from home, Toby Greene’s injury is absolutely devastating for Greater Western Sydney. I’m backing them to push the Eagles all the way, but his class will be sorely missed as the points go begging.

The most interesting parts of the Collingwood-Port Adelaide game will be what gets written on the banners and how many Power fans turn up in prison bar jumpers. Once the ball is bounced, you can flick on a movie – Port by a tonne.

Finally, I’m really interested to see whether North emulate what Adelaide did last season and become a whole new team after breaking the duck. The Bombers will need to have their wits about them, but should have the mettle to bank the win.

For this week’s Shoe-In, as much as I’m still adamant the Suns will do themselves a favour at the Cattery, it’s hard to pick any other match as being more of a certainty.

Dem Panopoulos


Brisbane, Carlton, Geelong, Melbourne, Western Bulldogs, Fremantle, West Coast, Port Adelaide, Essendon

Another bad week from me has meant the leaderboard has had a bit of a shakeup.

There was plenty of good footy in Round 9, headlined by the Kangaroos getting a win closer to moving off the bottom of the ladder. Let’s hope that this week provides contests that are a lot closer than what may seem on paper.

We kick off the round with my heart torn once again, with my long-standing premiership tip playing against the Tigers. Brisbane are firing on all cylinders at the moment and should win comfortably.

The Blues have played decent patches at times, but this one-on-one defensive setup is working horrifically, even with the best backman in the competition at their disposal. Still, whatever deficiencies they have, the Hawks are worse.

Geelong should beat Gold Coast by a trillion at GMHBA.

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Adelaide were far more competitive than I thought against the Eagles and returning home should give them a boost, but not enough to trouble the undefeated Demons.

The Bulldogs stamped their authority over Port Adelaide last week and the Saints shouldn’t be an issue, given Rowan Marshall was seemingly their saving grace. I’d still expect Max King to kick a bag.

The other Saturday night game should be particularly fun and the Swans will really want to prove themselves here. However, they’ve only won four games in Perth against the Dockers at both venues and that trend may well continue.

Toby Greene’s absence cannot be underestimated, while Jesse Hogan can’t get through much more than a half, which swings this contest across to the Eagles.

Now people are starting to catch on to the Power’s form, it’s time they really make a statement. They’ve had an alternating record between wins and losses since the start of 2017 at the MCG but that ends here, they simply need to beat Collingwood handily.

Finally, the Sunday twilight match could be a sneakily fun, high-scoring game to watch. Essendon have won five in a row against the Kangaroos and should have too much firepower for their depleted opposition.


Liam Salter

Brisbane, Carlton, Geelong, Melbourne, Western Bulldogs, Sydney, West Coast, Port Adelaide, Essendon

Nine outta nine, baby! A strangely successful week in riskier tips – thanks, Doggies and North – means it was my most successful tipping week of the year. This week seems relatively easy too, so I’m fully expecting to collapse from my lofty heights.

Let’s start with the one result you can essentially lock in: Geelong will absolutely, without a doubt, demolish the Suns at GMBHA Stadium. It’s just going to happen.

There are a few others that are close to locked-in territory but still pose significant risks: Port should be far to classy for Collingwood, the Blues simply need to defeat the Hawks and Melbourne are overwhelmingly favoured to make it ten in a row against the Crows (although they’ll be more competitive than you think).

On to the good stuff.

Brisbane’s clash with the Tigers tomorrow night should be a beauty. It’s the Victorians that have an imposing record over the hosts, winning four of the last five – none of those results being particularly close – though the Lions did score a qualifying final win last year.


Being at the Gabba does make this intriguing. The Lions are going for their sixth conservative win, while the reigning premiers have been uncharacteristically wayward.

My head says Richmond – their record over the Lions is usually a compelling reason to tip them – but my heart says Lions in a thriller. I’ll back the latter.

Joe Daniher of the Lions celebrates after kicking a goal

Joe Daniher (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

The Doggies face the Saints a night later. The Doggies were phenomenal in their win over Port, while the Saints epitomised ‘letting one slip’ against the Cats.

Like the Blues a few weeks ago, the Saints are a team with a good recent record over the Dogs, and this clash will go somewhat like that: expect the Saints to be competitive, perhaps even leading for a while, but the Dogs will do enough to win.

Freo host the Swans that same night. I have very, very little faith in the Dockers at the moment. Being back at home will suit them, and they’re a chance here, but I’ll back the Swans in this one. They’re just too classy.

Meanwhile, the Giants have been rocked by Toby Greene’s shoulder injury. That won’t be the be-all-or-end-all in their clash against the Eagles – who, win against the Hawks or not, still face questions about their away performances. This’ll be close, but the Eagles are the more compelling tip.


We finish the week with the Essendon playing North. Both won last week and, honestly, there’s a part of me that really wants to tip the Kangas again here. But I can’t – Essendon should be winning this one comfortably, and I’ll back them to do it.

Round 10 Stirling Dem Liam Crowd
Last week 7 6 9 7
Total 50 53 54 55