The teams that really didn’t make the finals…there I said it!
Nah all jokes aside, footy fans can finally look forward to some finals action after the annoying pre-finals bye that seemed to derail all momentum.
Although eight teams make the finals, we can generally put a line through a couple of teams winning the premiership before a game is even played.
In the strange and chaotic year we’ve had, it seems imprudent to rule out anything happening. But let’s do it anyway, ruling out, not just a couple, but five teams who can’t win the 2020 AFL premiership.
No team has won the premiership from 8th this century and the Pies have stumbled in with no kind of good form whatsoever. They haven’t realistically played well since their round seven victory over the Cats, having not defeated another top eight team since. De Goey and Treloar back in recent week helps, but missing Howe and Sidebottom continues to hurt. Now they have the unenviable task of taking on the Eagles in Perth in an elimination final… good luck!
Western Bulldogs (7th)
Perhaps this is a good omen given they finished 7th during the drought-breaking 2016 premiership. However, they’ve gone the whole season defeating just one of the other seven finalists, a narrow and controversial two-point victory over the Eagles in round 16. That can’t fill you with much confidence given they need to win four in a row to win another flag.
Saint Kilda (6th)
Been a great year for the Saints and they thoroughly deserve the position they’ve got themselves into. In saying that, this side is still too inexperienced to go all the way just yet.
Breaking a nine-year finals drought and a 54-year premiership drought in the same season isn’t going to happen.
Brisbane Lions (2nd)
A big call here given the grand final is being played at the Gabba, however it didn’t really prove much of a fortress in last year’s finals series did it? They got bounced out in straight sets and there remain question marks on which of their forwards will stand up when it counts to win them a final. May get to a prelim but highly doubt they go any further.
Port Adelaide (1st)
Technically the best team all season given they’ve been on top of the ladder ever since round one. Has anyone actually believed though, at any stage, that they’re the best team in the competition?
They’ve been the surprise packet this season but their ability to cover opposition key forwards continues to be a big issue. Can they limit Hawkins tonight? Or Lynch (currently injured) and Riewoldt if they come up against the Tigers? Or Kennedy and Darling at the Eagles? Don’t think so.
Yep, that just leaves three contenders for 2020 Grand Final glory, the Cats, Tigers & West Coast!