AFL Grand Final Preview – Sydney Swans v Western Bulldogs

Check out our guide to where to watch the AFL Grand Final in Saigon here…

Words – Roy Horgan

Here it comes, the best day of the year for footy fans and this one is setting up to deliver in spades! There are more than a few question marks over both teams but one thing for sure is that if the Swans and Dogs play their best footy then it’s gonna be a belter.

My main concern for the Dogs is that last weekend was their grand final. They looked so relieved and overjoyed after their nail bitting win over GWS that I really get the sense that they’re content with what they’ve achieved for the year. Also, the Dogs lack GF experience which as we saw last year with the Eagles can really overawe a team coming in as underdogs against a seasoned outfit like the Swans. The Dogs however have proven over the last month that finals pressure is something they thrive on. With mastermind coach Luke Beveridge having the Dogs playing relentless, high intensity footy with a great structure in place, the Dogs have plenty of confidence in themselves and their system and are not a team to get nervous and lose without a fight. Fight is what they’ve done all year, even when they weren’t in great form and come Saturday the Swans are going to be in for a hell of a battle with these boys. The Dogs are amazing at applying pressure on the ball carrier and getting numbers to the contest to help out their mates as well as having deadly outside spread and a scarily good running, attacking game.

western-bulldogs

The Swans go onto the MCG with a wealth of finals experience with this being their third GF in five years. While most will see this as a huge advantage, I actually feel it could work against the Swannies with the mental pressure it could possibly have on them. Two years ago the Swans were smashed by the Hawks and if they are to lose again and have only one flag out of three in the last five years, with the sensationally talented list they have, would be devastating. No doubt this will be playing on their minds and after winning the minor premiership and drawing the underdog Dogs the pressure to win the flag must be immense. The loss in the first week of the finals to GWS also shows that Sydney are very beatable when relentless pressure is put on them. Whilst there is a chance of the Swans underachieving I really can’t see the superstar Swans players not rising to the occasion. They have arguably the best midfield in the game, hard at it, skillful and able to bully teams into submission which is exactly what is needed in a GF. Add to this one of the best defenses in the game and the sublime Buddy Franklin up forward and you’ve got the perfect recipe for a grand final win.

sydney-swan

Patrick Dangerfield led a Geelong fightback in the third quarter but Sydney retained control of their

At the end of the day I’m buggered if I know who’s going to win but I’m almost certain that this granny is going to be epic. If I had to choose I’d flip a coin then failing that I’d pick the Swannies to win by 1 point and Kennedy for the Norm Smith.

I hope wherever you are in this amazing, buzzing city that you enjoy yet another massive grand final day and celebrate accordingly.

grand-final

Check out our guide to where to watch the AFL Grand Final in Saigon here…

By Roy Horgan

       

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