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AFL: Pies still the team to beat

There are just four rounds of the regular AFL season remaining before we head into finals and Collingwood remain the hot fancies to go all the way and win the grand final.

The top four on the ladder looks to be locked in, with Collingwood on course to win the minor premiership, while second spot is still up for grabs.

Port Adelaide hold it for now, but have both Brisbane and Melbourne breathing down their neck, so that battle will go right to the wire.

The winner of the grand final is likely to come from the top four. Western Bulldogs were the last side to win it when finishing outside of the top four back in 2016 and it remains a tough ask.

Carlton are finishing very strongly however and although they may miss out on the top four, momentum will count for a lot if they finish in the eight.

Collingwood

Collingwood are priced at 2.75 to win the 2023 AFL grand final and it is no surprise as they have been the stand-out team so far.

They did slip up against arch rivals Carlton at the weekend, but that was just their third defeat of the season and they still sit eight points clear at the top of the ladder.

The Pies have won a number of close encounters this season and have shown they can get the job done when the pressure is on.

Losing to Carlton could be just the kick up the backside they need with finals fast approaching.

Port Adelaide 

Up until a few weeks ago Port Adelaide were up there with Collingwood as one of the best teams in the AFL.

However the wheels have come off in recent weeks and after suffering three defeats on the bounce, there are serious question marks over their premiership credentials.

The 47-point loss against Adelaide in the Showdown will have set alarm bells ringing, while the 50-point loss to Carlton was also alarming.

Port remain second on the ladder and now the aim will be to rediscover their best form, hold on to second and go from there.

Ken Hinkley’s side are priced at 7.00 to win the grand final.

Brisbane Lions

The Lions are also priced at 7.00 to win the big dance and are just one win away from Port Adelaide.

They have not been great in recent weeks, losing two out of three, including a 41-point loss against the Gold Coast at the weekend.

Brisbane have some tough games against Adelaide, Collingwood and St Kilda to come and they need to pick up some good wins to take them into finals on a high.

Chris Fagan’s side have been regulars in finals in recent seasons and that experience will stand them in good stead.

Melbourne

The Demons are seen as the biggest threat to Collingwood and are priced at 5.00 to go on and win the grand final.

They did just that in 2021 so know what it takes to win a premiership. They look sure to finish in the top four and that will give them the platform to kick on.

Melbourne are in good form when winning the last four games on the bounce, including victories over Adelaide and Brisbane.

They also knocked over Collingwood and could be peaking at just the right time.

Carlton

If a side outside of the top four is to win it, it could well be Carlton, who are priced at 10.00 to win the flag.

They are the form team in the comp having won six on the bounce. They have beaten both Port Adelaide and Collingwood so confidence should be sky high.

There is still work to do to stay in the top eight however, and their run-in looks a tough one. But on current form it will hold no fear for Michael Voss’ side.

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