The 2020 AFL season rolls on as head honchos duck and weave their way through the challenges they seem to be facing on a daily basis. It looks like we won’t be seeing any more games in Victoria this season, with teams now relocating to hubs in Queensland and Perth for the foreseeable future to allow the season to continue. Round 7 of action kicks off with a great match between Collingwood and Geelong, coming to us all the way from Optus Stadium in Perth! Check out our Round 7 preview and AFL tips below, with thanks to the team at Before You Bet.
Geelong Cats vs. Collingwood Magpies
Thursday 8:10pm, Optus Stadium
The Cats went into their clash with the Lions as the underdogs last weekend but prevailed as the comfortable winners. Patty Dangerfield returned to some of his very best form, particularly when the game was there to be won in the third quarter.
The Magpies were also good last weekend albeit against a Hawks team that was putrid. It’ll be interesting to see how they measure up against a more consistently competent opponent this weekend.
There’s plenty to like about both clubs at the moment but injuries at Collingwood are starting to pile up, which could prove to be the difference. It’s a very competitive match we have on our hands to kick off Round 7, but Cats +3.5 line looks the best play here.
Prediction: Geelong +3.5 @$1.90
Essendon Bombers vs Western Bulldogs
Friday 7:50pm, Metricon Stadium
Essendon’s bandwagon is growing by the week and there’ll be plenty more jumping on if they can topple the Bulldogs on Friday night.
The Bombers were 14-point winners in an arm-wrestle against North Melbourne last weekend, while the Bulldogs were obliterated by a young and disciplined Blues outfit.
This is a very tough one to predict even if the Bombers come in at 4-1. They’ve burned punters too many times in seemingly favourable matchups over the years, so it’s wise to be extra cautious here. Instead, look for this match to go over the 124.5 total points line.
Prediction: Over 124.5 points @$1.90
GWS Giants vs. Brisbane Lions
Saturday 1:45pm, GIANTS Stadium
GWS were in a tight tussle against Port Adelaide up until three-quarter time last weekend but fell away in the last quarter to go down by a couple of goals.
Inconsistency between games, and even during games, continues to plague the Giants who now sit in 10th spot on the ladder.
The Lions were thoroughly beaten by the Cats last weekend despite looking the much better team early on. They’re now 0-2 away from home in 2020 which is a bit of a concern.
This is a very interesting clash that could go either way. There won’t be too many confident punters attacking this fixture but if you’re having a play, then Giants look the slightly better bet purely because they’re at home and the Lions have struggled away. Giants to cover the -3.5 point spread is our pick here.
Prediction: GWS Giants -3.5 @$1.90
Sydney Swans vs. Gold Coast Suns
Saturday 4:35pm, SCG
The Swans kicked three goals in a full match against the Tigers on Sunday and only lost by eight points – go figure.
The Suns were in their match against the Demons right up until the final siren but went down in a heartbreaker.
It wasn’t all doom and gloom for the Suns however, with former #3 pick Izak Rankine showing plenty in his first game, kicking three goals and showing unteachable smarts inside forward 50.
This looms as one the most intriguing fixtures of the round, simply due to the contrasting game styles these two clubs employ. The Swans play it slow. The Suns are lightning quick. It’ll be interesting, but it’s likely that the class of the Suns will prove too good en route to a cover of the -5.5 line.
Prediction: Gold Coast -5.5 @$1.90
Richmond Tigers vs. North Melbourne
Saturday 7:40pm, Metricon Stadium
Richmond will be hoping to play in a more free-flowing match this weekend after the slugfest they found themselves in against the Swans in Round 6.
Damien Hardwick wasn’t pleased with the Swans having “75,000 people in their defensive 50” and neither were the fans.
While North Melbourne don’t play as defensively as the Swans, they still prefer playing a contested style of footy and that usually leads to low-scoring matches. As much as we don’t want to see another slugfest, under 122.5 points is the bet here.
Prediction: Under 122.5 Points @$1.90
Carlton Blues vs. Port Adelaide Power
Sunday 1:05pm, GABBA
Weren’t the Blues just super impressive last weekend? They cracked 100 points for the first time in years and put a decent Bulldogs outfit to the sword by 52 points.
Port Adelaide were no slouches in Round 6 either. They came up against a perennial premiership contender in GWS and were able to outgun them when the whips were cracking in the last quarter.
Both sides come into this off impressive wins but the Power are the deserving favourites here. They’re a game + percentage clear at the top of the ladder and have been far more consistent than the young Blues this season. It’s bordering on too much to ask against a plucky Blues team but we still favour the Power to cover the -15.5 line.
Prediction: Port Adelaide -15.5 @$1.90
Hawthorn Hawks vs. Melbourne Demons
Sunday 3:35pm, GIANTS Stadium
Hawthorn didn’t look like Hawthorn at all last weekend. They showed minimal composure, they struggled to hold onto the ball and they missed countless short kicks. You’d be hard-pressed to find many Clarkson-coached Hawks teams to play that bad over the past 10 years.
Melbourne found themselves in yet another close match when they took on the up-and-coming Suns last weekend – only this time they were able to negotiate the win.
You can expect a superstar coach like Clarkson to move the chess pieces around this weekend and to get a big response from his players after a couple of poor weeks. For that reason alone, Hawthorn -5.5 is the safest play here.
Prediction: Hawthorn -5.5 @$1.90
Fremantle Dockers vs. West Coast Eagles
Sunday 6:35pm, Optus Stadium
Fremantle looked done and dusted when they trailed by six goals at quarter time against the Saints last weekend. They weren’t. Remarkably, they rallied back to win by a goal in the biggest comeback of the season.
The Eagles were given the fixture they needed to level their season up at 3-3. They were too strong for the listless Crows and are seemingly back in the hunt in season 2020.
West Coast have had the wood over Fremantle in the Derby for a long time now and they’re the obvious favourites to defeat their rivals again this weekend. In saying that, the Dockers have been competitive in every match this season despite being 2-4 and they’re a good bet again to cover the +16.5 line.
Prediction: Fremantle +16.5 @$1.95
Adelaide Crows vs St Kilda Saints
Monday 7:40pm, Adelaide Oval
The Crows are the easy beats this season and it won’t be changing anytime soon. They have minimal top-end talent and their depth is razor thing.
St Kilda had a meltdown for the ages against the Dockers in Round 6 when they gave up a six goal lead. Their inability to swing momentum when it’s against them is becoming increasingly worrying.
The Saints would be filthy they let one slip against the Dockers and they’ll be desperate to make amends ASAP. They get the perfect chance to bounce back against the Crows and you can count on them to cover the -16.5 spread on their way to a big win.
Prediction: St.Kilda -16.5 @$1.90