One of the best days on the Australian sporting calendar is upon us! The 2019 ANZAC Day clash between the Essendon Bombers and the Collingwood Magpies will be played this Thursday, the 25th of April from 3.20pm!
Round 6 in the AFL stretches from Wednesday-Sunday and we have you covered with preview and betting tips for all nine games at our AFL Tips Page! Today we’ll be focusing on the ANZAC Day blockbuster below.
Thursday 25th of April, 3.20pm AEST, MCG
The great ANZAC Day tradition will get another instalment this week as Essendon and Collingwood do battle from 3.20pm on Thursday. Both teams come into the game in good form, which only increases the anticipation for the blockbuster.
After losing their first two games of the season and looking like a team destined to miss the finals, the Bombers have bounced back to win their last three games in a row over the Demons, Lions and Kangaroos respectively. Granted, the opposition in those three games hasn’t been in the upper echelon of the AFL, however, the dominant fashion in which they defeated the Lions and Roos was ominous.
Dylan Shiel continues to impress in his first season in a Bombers uniform. The former GWS midfielder has averaged 29 touches in his first five games of the season. After a slow start, star midfielder Zach Merrett has also looked dangerous over the last few games and racked up 39 touches in the win over North Melbourne on the weekend.
However, the big story of the game against the Roos was of course, Joe Daniher. The key forward had been out of action for almost an entire year and made a shock return to the line-up on the weekend after not even being named as an emergency for the game. Daniher kicked two goals in the win and looked extremely confident for someone who hasn’t played in such a long time.
The Magpies looked back to their best on Thursday night as they travelled to Brisbane and gave the Lions an absolute hiding. After piling on seven goals in the first quarter, Collingwood went into cruise control, finishing the game with a 62 point win. There were seven multiple goal kickers for the Magpies as Brody Mihocek, Jordan De Goey, Jamie Elliot, Callum Brown, Jaidyn Stephenson, Mason Cox and Josh Thomas booted 17 goals between them.
Adam Treloar was once again the pick of the midfielders for Collingwood as he racked up 35 disposals and broke a line nearly every time he touched the ball. In fact, the Pies midfield was dominant as a whole as they boasted the top six possession winners on the ground.
Collingwood moved into premiership favouritism with the win and the West Coast Eagles loss to Port Adelaide on Friday night, which seems right given their form over the last two weeks and their injury list, which is just about the best in the league at the moment. Will Hoskin-Elliot looks set to return in the next few weeks, strengthening and already dominant forward line/midfield.
2018 Round 16 – Essendon (9.8.62) lost to Collingwood (12.6.78)
2018 Round 5 – Collingwood (14.17.101) defeated Essendon (7.10.52)
2017 Round 16 – Collingwood (12.8.80) lost to Essendon (18.9.117)
2017 Round 5 – Essendon (15.10.100) defeated Collingwood (11.16.82)
2016 Round 5 – Collingwood (22.10.142) defeated Essendon (11.7.73)
2015 Round 23 – Collingwood (14.8.92) lost to Essendon (14.11.95)
2015 Round 4 – Essendon (6.13.49) lost to Collingwood (9.15.69)
Collingwood have shown dominance in the ANZAC Day game over the last nine years, winning seven of those games. They won in 2018 and also defeated Essendon later in the year (Round 16) by 16 points. They come into this match as 12.5 point favourites, which seems about right given the ANZAC Day clashes are generally pretty close regardless of the sides current form.
Former ANZAC Day medallist David Zaharakis should return to the line-up this week after missing the game against North Melbourne, adding to the Dons midfield that has been dominant over the last few weeks. It’ll need to be great again this weekend if it hopes to run with the Collingwood midfield, which is arguably the best in the league.
Tough game to call but it’s hard to look past Collingwood at the moment. In retrospect, their loss to the Cats in Round 1 wasn’t as bad as we thought at the time and they were unlucky to come up against a fired up West Coast side in Round 3. Apart from those games, they’ve barely put a foot wrong and were dominant against the Lions in Brisbane in Round 5.
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