I notice that the Eagles have been given pretty generous odds of $2o to $1 to win the premiership, while the Freo Dockers are favoured by many to finally have a break through year being installed as third favourites at $11 behind Geelong and St Kilda.
My prediction? A Freo verses St Kilda Grand final. With the loss of King and Nathan Ablett, Geelong will still be strong but after the incredible celebration of last year (justified) I suspect they may drop off in intensity this year.
The Saints have got a decent coach, who seems to have worked out how they play best, and with ‘no kneck thug’ Gherig back at FF, and Dal Santo in the midfield, they look pretty good. They also have at least one sniper in the pack and no one on the team wants to see their captain cry again, so they have the motivation.
I do think Freo can do it this year, but as always, it depends on them. Hasleby was a big loss, and with him, I would be more confident. But I think many people forget we were without Michael Johnson for the first four games last year, Farmer for half the season and the tallest ruckman in the league for much of the last half of the season with groin issues.
We have the best centre half forward (better than Brown who is injury prone and not as flexible), three great ruckman, a excellent back line including the best back pocket player (Hayden) and the most underated back player (Grover). With the addition of Schammer who missed most of last year and has been in great form during the pre season, Black, who missed a lot of the year and Des Hedland looking like he might start to fulfill his potential, it is possible.
Some other predictions….
1. Wallace will get the lemon and sarse by round 20 and Richmond will win the most unwanted spoon in the AFL
2. Worsfold will continue to say nothing to the media, while being fawned over by channel 6peagle
3. North Melbourne will continue to suprise us, but will again fall short, you need money in this game to get that extra 5%
4. The AFL will declare that Eagles are on their last chance for the 23rd time
5. Brisbane and Hawthorn will challenge for the top four
6. If he can stay away from taxi aerials and horse chaff….Daniel Kerr will win the Brownlow
7. Farmer will have his best year ever, kicking 50 goals and prove to the footy world what every Freo fan knows, he is the ultimate team player. (To those who know he kicked more goals during one stellar year at Melbourne, this will be his best year as a team player)
8. Rhys Palmer will win the rising star award.
9. Pavlich will win the Coleman