Last Time We Met
Giants 66 defeated Collingwood 64
It was a Friday night classic when the Pies last faced the Giants in Round 4 last season. The Giants were able to hold on from a Collingwood final quarter onslaught. Poor execution in front of goals cost the Pies, with 1.5 in the last quarter not enough to hit the lead.
In what was a tough, contested game Grundy was dominant in the ruck against Mumford with 47 hit-outs and 19 disposals. Pendlebury had 26 disposals, including 7 clearances and 429 meters gained.
Brayden Maynard v Toby Greene
Toby Greene is arguably one of the most damaging forwards in the competition, especially when he’s confident and in-form. Unfortunately for the Pies Greene enjoys playing against Collingwood, reflected in the fact that he averages more disposals against the Pies than he does against any other club (25 per game). With the recent injury to Stephen Coniglio, there’s a chance Greene will also spend more of the match in the midfield where he will need to be kept a close eye on by the likes of Scott Pendlebury and Jack Crisp.
When forward, it’s likely that Collingwood defender Brayden Maynard will take responsibility for making sure Greene isn’t able to hit the scoreboard. Maynard has had a quiet start to the year by his lofty standards, but loves the challenge of a marquee matchup like Greene.
Taylor Adams v Tim Taranto
Historically, the team who has dominated the midfield has come away with the 4 points when these two teams have met. So when Taylor Adams lines up against Giants young gun Tim Taranto on Saturday night, the outcome of their match-up will have a significant impact on the result.
Taylor Adams had a monstrous performance against Carlton in Round Two, notching up a career high 13 clearances. Averaging 8.67 clearances per game in 2021 (also a career high), the Pies will need Adams to be at his contested ball winning best against the Giants.
Equally, Taranto is averaging an equal career best 27 disposals so far this season as he becomes a leader of the GWS midfield. Its Taranto’s ability to gain territory with his disposals that has been a highlight this season, increasing his average kicks from 12 last season to 18.3 this season.
Pies’ tall forwards vs Giants' tall defenders
Brody Mihocek (7) and Mason Cox (6) lead the goal kicking for the Pies after the first three rounds this season, and there should be a big opportunity on Saturday night for them to extend their tallies further.
With a variety of injuries impacting the Giant’s key defender stock, Cox and Mihocek should have opportunities to utilise their marking ability and have multiple shots at goal. The return of the key forward has been prevalent in 2021, with other teams such as Adelaide and the Western Bulldogs reaping the benefits of their marquee forwards kicking large scores. If the Pies can get the ball down the forward line cleanly, look for a potential bag of goals for one of the Collingwood spearheads.
Look Out For
Beau Mccreery to hit the ground running
For those Pies fans who don’t know a lot about Mccreery, it won’t take long to realise that he is QUICK. Forward pressure, effort and an awesome tackler, look for Mccreery to make an immediate impact on Saturday night against the Giants.
Despite being drafted in last season’s draft, Mccreery has spent a year playing in the SANFL for South Adelaide Football Club. This has provided Mccreery with the opportunity to spend time playing against experienced bodies, honing his skills and forward craft at a senior level.
The Inside Word
The ability to hit the scoreboard regularly has been a key indicator of success for the top sides in the competition so far this season. Recognised by Bucks as a trend the team will be looking to “take advantage of”, the onus will be on the forward line to kick a winning score against the Giants.
In 2021, the Pies average 11.3 goals per game while GWS average 9.7 goals per game. Teams such as Port Adelaide, Sydney and the Western Bulldogs all average over 15 goals per game.
Time to bounce back. Victory was snatched out of the Pies’ grasp after the siren against the Lions, it’s important the team doesn’t get disheartened by the result.
In what was largely a strong performance against a very competitive side, the Pies need to take the positive mindset and play style found in round two into the game against the Giants.
A young Giants side will be deflated after a 0-3 start, not allowing them to gain confidence early will be essential in ensuring it’s the Pies who walk away from the MCG victorious on Saturday night.
Collingwood v Giants
AFL Round Four
Saturday 10 April
MCG, 7.25pm AEST