MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 16: Drew Petrie of the Kangaroos looks dejected as he leaves the field during the round 17 AFL match between the North Melbourne Kangaroos and the Port Adelaide Power at Etihad Stadium on July 16, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Zero Hanger’s 2016 final eight

Season 2016 has once again flown by.

With just five rounds remaining, the excitement of finals footy is just around the corner.

While the final eight may have looked locked to many several weeks ago, North Melbourne’s drop in form has St Kilda and Port Adelaide ready to pounce.

We have looked at every team still in the hunt for a final eight position and predicted where each team will finish come the final game of the home and away season.

Here is our final eight:

  1. Hawthorn: 19 wins, 3 losses – 121%

It’s hard to see Hawthorn losing another game looking at their run into the finals. The toughest test will come against the Eagles at Domain Stadium, but even with a loss in that game, the Hawks should remain in top spot come the end of Round 23.

  • Carlton (AU) – W
  • Melbourne (MCG) – W
  • North Melbourne (MCG) – W
  • West Coast (DS) – W
  • Collingwood (MCG) – W

2. GWS Giants: 17 wins, 5 losses – 130%

The Giants have a favourable run home and should not drop another game for the season, which would see them finish in an amazing second spot on the ladder, a feat which seemed highly improbably this time last year.

  • Richmond (MO) – W
  • Gold Coast (MS) – W
  • West Coast (SPO) – W
  • Fremantle (SPO) – W
  • North Melbourne (ES) – W

3. Sydney: 17 wins, 5 losses – 128%

The Swans should also win every game for the rest of the season, with their toughest test coming against North Melbourne in Round 22 in Hobart. The Roos are the only top eight side the Swans play in the final five rounds.

  • Fremantle (DS) – W
  • Port Adelaide (SCG) – W
  • St Kilda (ES) – W
  • North Melbourne (BA) – W
  • Richmond (SCG) – W

4. Geelong: 17 wins, 5 losses – 128%

The Cats have been an enigma over the past month. A loss to St Kilda, a thumping at the hands of Sydney, a narrow win over Fremantle and then an impressive win over Adelaide. However, they have a favourable run home, with the depleted Bulldogs this week their biggest test and after looking to have regained their form last week, the Cats should finish the season strongly.

  • Western Bulldogs (SS) – W
  • Essendon (ES) – W
  • Richmond (MCG) – W
  • Brisbane (G) – W
  • Melbourne (SS) – W

5. Adelaide: 17 wins, 5 losses – 125%

Adelaide needed to beat the Cats on Friday night to finish in the top four. They still have a chance if any of the three sides above them slip up, but should they finish fifth, they will still secure a home final, which will almost guarantee them passage into the second week of finals.

  • Essendon (AO) – W
  • Brisbane (AO) – W
  • Fremantle (DS) – W
  • Port Adelaide (AO) – W
  • West Coast (AO) – W

6. Western Bulldogs: 16 wins, 6 losses – 116%

The Dogs’ loss to St Kilda on the weekend will hurt in more ways than one. They have all but missed a chance of finishing inside the top four and also suffered two season ending injuries to key players. They are unlikely to be able to overcome the Cats at Simonds Stadium on Friday night, before another tough test against the Roos. Whether they win or lose against North Melbourne, the Bulldogs should finish in sixth spot.

  • Geelong (SS) – L
  • North Melbourne (ES) – W
  • Collingwood (ES) – W
  • Essendon (ES) – W
  • Fremantle (DS) – W

7. West Coast: 14 wins, 8 losses – 123%

West Coast currently sit in fifth spot on the ladder and are equal on wins with the second placed Giants. However, tough matches on the road against GWS and Adelaide, plus a difficult home match against Hawthorn will make life hard for last season’s grand finalists. The Eagles should beat the Pies this week, but it is by no means a fore gone conclusion, with West Coast’s poor away record well publicised. Regardless of the result against Collingwood, they are unlikely to drop to eighth given North’s tough run home.

  • Collingwood (MCG) – W
  • Fremantle (DS) – W
  • GWS (SPO) – L
  • Hawthorn (DS) – L
  • Adelaide (AO) – L

8. North Melbourne: 12 wins, 10 losses – 107%

The Roos’ fall from grace continues, with a very difficult run home. North Melbourne play four teams inside the top eight in the final four rounds of the season. They will most likely cement their spot in the eight with a win over St Kilda this week. However, lose against the Saints and they may well drop out of the eight come Round 23.

  • St Kilda (ES) – W
  • Western Bulldogs (ES) – L
  • Hawthorn (MCG) – L
  • Sydney (BA) – L
  • GWS (ES) – L

9. St Kilda: 12 wins, 10 losses – 94%

St Kilda’s shock loss to the Suns four weeks ago may prove far more costly than initially thought, with a finals spot now very much within their grasp. As mentioned earlier, beat North Melbourne, and the Saints can dream of a very unlikely finals birth. Lose and they will probably finish a heartbreaking ninth. Regardless of where they finish, it has been a very positive season for the young Saints, with the future looking very bright under Alan Richardson.

  • North Melbourne (ES) – L
  • Carlton (MCG) – W
  • Sydney (ES) – L
  • Richmond (MCG) – W
  • Brisbane (ES) – W

10. Port Adelaide: 11 wins, 11 losses – 106%

The Power could have been a red hot chance to steal North’s spot in the finals had they beaten the Giants last weekend. However, they were not able to maintain their impressive first quarter and now seem destined to finish just outside the eight.

  • Brisbane (G) – W
  • Sydney (SCG) – L
  • Melbourne (AO) – W
  • Adelaide (AO) – L
  • Gold Coast (MS) – W

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17 COMMENTS

  1. Chris Charlton the “experts” think the crows will win all 5 games and lose 3% even though they play Essendon and Brisbane at home in the next two weeks haha

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