MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 27: Ben Long of the Saints celebrates during the 2019 AFL round 19 match between the St Kilda Saints and the Melbourne Demons at Marvel Stadium on July 27, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Demons great Garry Lyon has tipped five clubs that will undoubtedly make the top eight in 2021, with the Tigers, Cats, Power, Lions and Saints all destined for a return to the September action in Lyon’s eyes.

While the aforementioned five sides are considered finals “locks” for the year ahead, Lyon also added the Eagles and Bulldogs to his predicted clubs to reach the top eight, while suggesting he had less confidence in 2020 finalists Collingwood.

The Magpies have endured a horrid off-season since their 68-point semi-final exit to Geelong, with star players and key figures since leaving the Holden Centre in ugly fashion.

AFL Rd 12 - Melbourne v Collingwood
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA – AUGUST 15: The Magpies react after the loss of the round 12 AFL match between the Melbourne Demons and the Collingwood Magpies at The Gabba on August 15, 2020 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Jono Searle/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)

Out of the top eight sides of yesteryear, Lyon tipped Collingwood to face the most pressure from those looking to burst through the barrier, naming Carlton, Melbourne and Fremantle as the next cabs on the rank.

“I’ve got Richmond a lock, I’ve got Geelong a lock. I’ve got Port Adelaide a lock, I’ve got the Lions a lock, I’ve got the Saints a lock and the other three are up in the air,” Lyon said on SEN Breakfast

“I think the Eagles will make it, I think the (Dogs) will probably make it, I’d say Collingwood (is the most vulnerable).

“I said it the other day, I can’t work out what (Collingwood is) going to do. They may gather themselves and have another tilt or they might drop out, I don’t know the answer to that.

“Freo, Carlton and Melbourne would be the ones (likely to reach the top eight).”

Out of the clubs looking to land a finals berth, Carlton have amounted the most pressure for a return, with club great Robert Walls suggesting Blues coach David Teague should be shown the door if the club fails to make it to September.

“If they made finals, they have got to continue with David Teague no doubt. But if they didn’t, they will probably have to cast the net and look at what’s about,” Walls told The Age this week.

“This will be his third year. The team promises a lot but hasn’t delivered a lot the last few seasons. So it’s time.”