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Aussie Rules: Blues and Lions clash at Marvel

A top-six clash gets week eight of the AFL season underway on Friday night when Carlton entertain Brisbane under the lights at Marvel Stadium.

Friday night footy in Melbourne is as good as it gets and another big crowd will pack in to watch these two premiership hopefuls go head-to-head. 

It is always tight on the ladder at this stage of the season, with just seven rounds played, but it is even more so in 2023. 

Collingwood lead the way on 24 points and just below them, four teams sit on 20 points. 

Brisbane are one of those teams, but Carlton are just two points behind having drawn a game this season. 

It means the Blues can leapfrog over the Lions with a win, while the visitors could go joint top. 

There is all to play for in this opening game of the round and it is tough to predict how it will go. 

All the teams in the top eight look capable of beating each other on any given day and it is no different with these two. Let’s take a closer look at the match-up with the bounce fast approaching.

Jury still out on Carlton

WhatCarlton v Brisbane
WhereMarvel Stadium, Melbourne
When19:50 (AEST) Friday 5th April, 2023
How to watchChannel 7, Foxtel, Kayo
OddsCarlton 1.85, Brisbane 1.97

Carlton sit in sixth spot on the AFL ladder having won four games so far, but the jury is still out over whether they are genuine premiership contenders. 

That is because the teams they have beaten, barring Geelong, are not expected to be up there come the end of the season. 

The Blues also got Geelong at a good time when playing them two games into the season. 

The Cats have since picked up and look to be getting back towards their best. Carlton’s other wins have been against Greater Western Sydney, North Melbourne and West Coast Eagles. 

When they have come up against stronger opposition, they have lost. St Kilda beat them by 22 points in week seven and Adelaide smashed them 118-62 in the round before. 

With that in mind, Carlton still have a lot to prove. A win over the Lions would help to ease some of the fears among the members and also silence the outside noise. 

This will be just the second time they have played at Marvel this season. The first being the loss to St Kilda, the win over Geelong was at the MCG, the rest have been on the road.

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Brisbane out to cure travel sickness 

The Lions are sitting in fourth place on the ladder with a 5-2 record, but they face a big test travelling to Melbourne to take on the Blues. 

Brisbane’s best results tend to come on home soil where they have won four of their games this season, including against top sides Melbourne and Collingwood. 

Their one win on the road this season came at Greater Western Sydney in week six, but they were well beaten at Port Adelaide and slipped to a narrow defeat against the Bulldogs, a game that was also played at Marvel Stadium. 

However Chris Fagan’s men are on a run of three straight wins and will be out to make it four against Carlton. 

They have the edge over the Blues in recent meetings as well, winning the last three. The most recent meeting was in August 2022 in Brisbane, with the Lions running out 114-81 winners. 

The Lions also beat Carlton by 18 points at Marvel Stadium in April 2021. Brisbane have however been hit by the news influential duo Dayne Zorko and Daniel Rich will miss the next two weeks with hamstring and calf injuries respectively. 

They do however have Josh Dunkley, who is starting to shine after arriving from the Western Bulldogs and he will be key to their chances on Friday night.

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