On this historic occasion of Collingwood versus Port Adelaide, who remembers this old chestnut from 2018:
The culprit has never been identified, but the lead suspect is a Mr D.Koch from the North Shore of Sydney.
Brisbane Lions (4th) vs Richmond (8th) at the Gabba, Friday 7:50pm AEST
Oddly enough, this is the only game this weekend in which both teams are inside the Top 8.
Yes, it’s the rematch of last season’s Qualifying Final, in which the Lions broke their decade-long 15 game losing streak against Richmond by 15 points, and also marked the first time they’d defeated the two-time defending premiers at The Gabba since 2004, which remains the Tigers’ only loss at the ground since then, thanks to the Grand Final win 3 weeks later.
For the record, the 15 consecutive wins that the Tigers strung together against the Lions sits as the second-longest Team vs Team streak the AFL era, behind North Melbourne’s 17-game winning streak over Melbourne between 2007 and 2017.
The current longest team vs team streak is now shared by 3 teams on 11 consecutive wins; West Coast against Fremantle, Richmond against Carlton, and Port Adelaide against the Gold Coast.
Carlton (13th) vs Hawthorn (17th) at the MCG, Saturday 1:45pm AEST
This year marks 20 years since Hawk Ben Dixon goaled after the siren to defeat the Blues… It’s the most recent instance a Hawthorn player kicked a goal after the siren to win a game.
This is only the fourth time in the last 10 years that Carlton and Hawthorn have played at the MCG – Oddly enough, the Blues will have been the home team 3 times, despite the fact they play most of their home games at Docklands.
If you go back through history, the Bluebaggers tended to dominate the Hawks, winning 46 out of the first 50 meetings between 1925 and 1953, but in what is now the most lopsided match-up of the last 20 years, the Hawks have won 22 out of the last 25 games against the Blues, whose only wins in the last 20 years came in Round 12 of 2004, Round 6 of 2005, and Round 22 of 2017.
It’s probably no surprise when you consider the fortunes of both clubs in that 20 year timeframe, although in some striking coincidence, neither the Blues or Hawks made the finals in each of the years the Blues won those 3 games.
Another random fact – Through 168 games against one another (103-65 the way of Carlton), the teams have never played in a draw, with the only 1-point result going the way of Hawthorn in a Grand Final rematch at Waverley in Round 14 of 1987, before the Blues got the ultimate revenge and defeated them in both the Semi Final and the Grand Final.
It’s the most games Carlton has played against any opponent without recording a draw, and vice versa for Hawthorn.
Geelong (3rd) vs Gold Coast (14th) at GMHBA Stadium, Saturday 2:10pm AEST
Geelong has won all 6 clashes against the Suns at Kardinia Park by an average of 78 points, among them a 150 point win in 2011, a 120 point win in 2016, and a 102 point win in the final round of 2018.
Amazingly enough, the Suns are the only team in league history to have never recorded a win in Sleepy Hollow – Even dour little University had a 3-4 record at Corio Oval before the Students departed the VFL in 1914, and Greater Western Sydney recorded their only win at ‘The Cattery’ to date in 2019.
One other note – Joel Selwood is on the verge of jumping into the Top 5 for the most games as captain:
Adelaide (15th) vs Melbourne (1st) at the Adelaide Oval, 4:05pm ACST
This year marks 20 years since Melbourne’s last win at the old AAMI Stadium – Current Demons coach Simon Goodwin appeared to have kicked the winner for the Crows with 30 seconds remaining, only for David Schwarz to belt a hit out straight to best afield Andrew Leoncelli, who kicked the winning goal for the Dees with 4 seconds remaining.
Overall, the Crows had a 13-3 record against the Demons at Football Park between 1991 and 2013, but the Demons have fared far better at the Adelaide Oval, winning 4 out of the 5 meetings since 2014.
As we all know, Melbourne have started a season 9-0 for the third time in club history, matching the premiership years of 1955 and 1956, and going where no Demons team has gone before and starting the year 10-0 would give them 12 consecutive wins, which would become the outright 2nd-longest winning streak in the club’s history, bettered only by the 19 straight wins between ’55 and ’56.
Funnily enough, the last two teams to start a season 9-0 – North Melbourne in 2016 and Melbourne this year – Both featured Ben Brown.
For the record, the last team to start a season 10-0 was Geelong in 2011, who would end up starting the year 13-0, and went on to win the premiership.
Western Bulldogs (2nd) vs St Kilda (11th) at Marvel Stadium, Saturday 7:25pm AEST
The rematch of last year’s thrilling Elimination Final, in which the Saints won their first final in 10 years, and thanks to that win, the Saints have won all 3 games against the Bulldogs since Brett Ratten took the reins, including his first game in charge, with that hat-trick standing as the best active winning streak against Luke Beveridge’s team.
Funnily enough, the Bulldogs are the only current Victorian club that the Saints have a winning record against – 84 wins and 3 draws from 163 meetings.
On to more positive news for the Scraggers, they brought up a major milestone on Saturday at the Adelaide Oval, recording their 900th VFL/AFL win after 96 years in the league, which means North Melbourne (On 888) are now the only current Victorian club who haven’t recorded 900 league wins.
Meantime, after 9 rounds in 2020, St Kilda had the best goalkicking accuracy in the league at 63.8%, and fter 9 rounds of this season, the Saints have plummeted to 17th at 47.4%, no thanks to that horrendous display of 5.17 in front of the sticks on Friday night.
It was also the 23rd time in the last 10 years that the Saints have lost a game after leading at Half Time, tied for the second-most of any team in that time (Alongside Gold Coast and West Coast) behind North Melbourne, who have lost 24 times after leading at the half in the last decade.
Fremantle (10th) vs Sydney Swans (6th) at Optus Stadium, Saturday 5:40pm AWST
During Saturday’s game at the SCG, the Swans hit Rock Bottom, as James Rowbottom tackled Steele Sidebottom and created a piece of league history that was noted by Useless AFL Stats:
If only Mark Winterbottom had been in the crowd.
Thanks to their wins over Sydney at Optus Stadium in 2019 and 2020, the Dockers have the chance to make it a hat-trick of wins against the Swans for the first time since 1996-97, and the fact the Dockers knocked off the Swans twice in 1996 remains such an odd achievement, considering the Swans lost only 5 games on their way to the minor premiership and their first Grand Final appearance in 51 years, whereas Freo only finished 13th.
For the Swans, Lance Franklin is set to play his first game in his native Perth since the inaugural game at Optus Stadium in 2018, when he kicked 8 goals and became one of the first victims of the new stadium’s notoriously hard surface after sustaining what was described as a heel injury, which was still affecting him some 2 months after the game.
Funnily enough, that inaugural game is still the only time the Swans have played the Eagles at the new stadium.
Finally, thanks to kicking themselves out of the game against Essendon on Sunday, Fremantle are now a conspicuous 18th in the league for goalkicking accuracy, having gone at 45% through 9 games (96.117) – Round 9 marked 7th time already this season the Dockers have kicked below 50% in a game, with the only 2 games at or above 50% coming in Round 5, when they kicked 12.12 against the Crows, and the Western Derby in Round 7, when they kicked 11.7 against the Eagles.
GWS Giants vs West Coast Eagles at Giants Stadium, Sunday 1:10pm AEST
Back in 2017, the Giants avenged Nic Naitanui ripping their hearts out in 2016 by defeating West Coast for the first time in Round 10 at Subiaco, and the G-Men would go on to complete a clean sweep of the Eagles by winning at the Showground in Round 22, combined with the added bonus of a Semi Final win a few weeks later.
As it turned out, those are the only 3 wins the Giants have ever recorded against the Eagles, who won the first 5 meetings between the teams, and have since won the last 4, although they haven’t played the Giants in Sydney since 2018.
Collingwood (16th) vs Port Adelaide (5th) at the MCG, Sunday 3:20pm AEST
It’s Grudge Sunday in Melbourne, considering it’s Collingwood vs Port + Essendon vs North , and if Eddie McGuire and David Koch give the team talks this week, come 3pm on Sunday afternoon at the MCG, it’ll look something like this:
So the big stat of the weekend, and potentially the season, is that Collingwood are starting down the barrel of their 1000th VFL/AFL defeat, and it’s impressive that the Magpies held out this long being a foundation VFL club, considering Richmond, who entered the league 11 years after the Pies, are a good 100 losses ahead of them, and the three ‘invitees’ from 1925 in Footscray, Hawthorn and North Melbourne all cleared the 1000 loss milestone in the last decade.
For the record, Collingwood have played 2585 games played for 1558 wins, 28 draws and 999 defeats, a winning percentage of 60.81%, the best winning % of any club in the league by a good 3% to the West Coast Eagles, despite having played 1780 more games than the Eagles.
Of course, that winning percentage drops down by a good 1/3 in Grand Finals.
And the final fact – The Pies and Power are locked on 16 wins apiece after 32 meetings between one another.
Collingwood took the head to head lead in 2010, Port won it back in 2017, Collingwood got back ahead in 2019, but Port tied it up in the final round of last season, taking the minor premiership in the process.
Essendon (12th) vs North Melbourne (18th) at Marvel Stadium, Sunday 4:40pm AEST
The Bombers have won the last 5 games against the Kangaroos, their longest winning streak against their northern suburbs rivals since they won 6 straight between 1999 to 2001, a streak that was capped off by the league-record 69 point comeback in Round 17 of ’01, and if you want another odd fact, that memorable game is also the highest scoring AFL game since quarters were shortened to 20 minutes in 1994 – A combined total of 330 points.
Essendon wouldn’t record another win against North until 2008, and Kevin Sheedy would never coach another team to victory against the Roos, given he lost the last 6 games in charge at the Bombers, and would lose all 3 encounters at GWS.