Where and when: Adelaide Oval, Thursday April 4, 7.50pm AEDT
Last time they met: Adelaide Oval, round 17, 2018. Adelaide 16.16 (112) defeated Geelong 14.13 (97).
Buoyed by the re-signing of star midfielder Rory Sloane, the Crows survived a late scare to overcome the Cats. Sloane starred with 27 disposals (17 contested), Rory Laird had 43 and Tom Lynch kicked four goals, while Patrick Dangerfield had 33 touches and three goals for the Cats.
What it means for Adelaide: It’s a chance for the Crows to build on their gritty victory on the road against Sydney at the SCG last Friday night. They’re also searching for their first home win of the season after their round one loss to Hawthorn.
What it means for Geelong: The Cats are aiming for three straight wins to start the season after beating Collingwood and Melbourne in successive weeks. But they’ll have to overcome a five-day break and a poor recent record against the Crows in Adelaide.
How Adelaide wins: Continue to have a strong connection between the midfield and the forwards. The delivery into the forward 50 needs to be spot on to prevent the Cats from picking off their forward entries.
How Geelong wins: Dominating at the coalface. Patrick Dangerfield, Tim Kelly, Charlie Constable and Mitch Duncan will play key roles in the midfield.
The stat: The Crows have won their past three games against the Cats at Adelaide Oval. The Cats have a 4-4 record at the ground, but most of those victories have come against Port Adelaide.
The match-up: Rory Sloane v Patrick Dangerfield
Although they won’t play directly on each other, the former teammates will see plenty of one another at centre bounces and stoppages around the ground. Dangerfield is No.2 overall in the Schick AFL Player Ratings with Sloane not far behind at No.9.
It’s a big week for: Rory Laird
The All Australian defender was well held by Sydney’s George Hewett last week and kept to just 21 disposals. After averaging 32 touches per game in 2018, Laird needs to get more involved as the Crows transition the ball from defence to attack.
Big call: Geelong to lead by three goals at three-quarter time before the Crows charge home on fresher legs as the Cats run out of gas after a five-day break.
Mottsy’s Tip: Adelaide by 10
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