Collingwood and Geelong will both be desperate to end their losing streaks when the two clubs meet at GHMBA Stadium on Sunday.
Both clubs have been used to success at VFL level in recent years. This hasn’t translated to the early stages of 2019 however – both sides are languishing in the bottom-four with just one win apiece.
Their struggles in form are especially surprising given the strength of the corresponding AFL sides this year. Sunday’s game presents an opportunity for one of the pair to begin its ascent up the ladder.
If the respective ladder positions of the two sides weren’t enough, both coaches may have extra motivation to claim a win over their former clubs. Collingwood coach Jared Rivers spent three seasons at the Cattery, while Geelong is led by Shane O’Bree, who played 227 games over ten seasons for the Pies.
The Magpies were as close as can be to earning their first premiership points since round one on Sunday but were beaten deep into time-on by Sandringham.
Geelong’s lone win came in round three against Werribee. As their healthy percentage suggests, the Cats have been competitive in their losses this season and will also feel as though their luck is due to change.
Last season’s match between the teams was a thriller. A late Jarryd Blair goal earned Collingwood a four-point win at the Holden Centre.
The teams had contrasting fortunes in round six of 2018, with just one loss each to that point of the season.
On the injury front, the Magpies will be buoyed by the fact that both Brayden Sier and co-captain Jack Hellier made successful returns against the Zebras last week.
Max Lynch (concussion) is the only fresh concern. He will undergo tests in the coming days to test his fitness.
Flynn Appleby (ankle), Tyler Brown (shoulder) and Nathan Murphy (ankle) are all expected to be sidelined for at least one more week.
Sunday’s clash will begin at 1.00pm.
Jack Hellier looks to release a handball under pressure last year against the Cats. (Photo: Shane Barrie)