Round 8: Men's Football Preview

By Sam Doyle


Division 1: 

The Southern Football Netball League’s top division of men’s football heads into a crucial round of fixtures which may be season-defining for a number of teams. 

St Paul’s McKinnon will be looking to firmly cement themselves as a real premiership contender in season 2022 as they host mid table Dingley. 

St Paul’s McKinnon who head into this clash off the back of an impressive win over similarly placed St Kilda City. The Doggies have built up some impressive form and will be looking to continue that momentum in this week's clash with star Stephan Muller riding high after a monster 7 goal performance in last week's outing, which he'll be looking to back that up again. 

On the other hand, Dingley are coming off a 14 goal thumping of lowly placed Bentleigh which will surely give the group a major confidence boost heading into this crucial game. Lucas Walmsley produced a best on ground performance last week and will be looking to continue his good form alongside Daniel Farmer who also produced a huge bag of 7 goals last time out. 

This game has all the makings of a thriller and may well come down to which 7 goal hero can deliver for their team. 

East Malvern will host St Kilda City in what looks to be a game where St Kilda City can assert their authority and push for a top two spot. 

East Malvern are coming into this game having endured a tough start to the season coming off the back of seven straight losses. 

St Kilda City will be looking to respond after last week's loss to the Doggies and this looks to be a game where they can wrestle that momentum back their way with a win at Dunlop Reserve. 

St Kilda will rightly go into this game as red hot favourites but could this be the week that sees East Malvern pick up their first win of the season in front of their home fans. 

Port Melbourne Colts will host the red hot team of the competition in the Cranbourne Eagles which shapes to be a huge test for the home team. 

The Colts coming off the back of a nail-biter last week will be out to stake their finals claim and break free of the logjam they sit in at the middle of the table. 

If they have any chance of winning this affair they will need Callan Wellings to be at his dynamic best after showing what he is capable of in his last 2 and only games of the season.

Cranbourne Eagles are shaping up to be the team to beat in season 2022 as they go from strength to strength only suffering the one loss to start the season. Marc Holt who currently leads the league for goals kicked this season will be looking to hit the scoreboard again here. 

This matchup shapes up as a contest in which the Eagles should win but is a great chance for the Colts to display their best football and send a warning to the rest of the competition. 

Another clash that is set to be an intriguing battle is Cheltenham who host Springvale districts in a season shaping clash for both teams. 

Cheltenham will be aiming to press their claims for a top two finish this season after they have started the season strongly holding a 5-2 record. 

Springvale Districts who currently sit seventh on the table will be out to push their chances of a potential finals appearance. Tyrone Vickery impressed last time out with 6 majors and showed his dominance all around the ground being and they will be needing him to be at his very best if the Districts can cause an upset away from home. 

The key matchup in this match will be the battle of the midfields without either side having a dominant ruckman. 

Both teams boasting strong midfielders, and whichever team gets on top in that battle, may well decide the outcome of this game. 

In what looks to be the most evenly poised contest this round Bentleigh and Mordialloc will battle this Saturday at Bentleigh reserve. 

Bentleigh, who currently sit two games below Mordialloc, will be aiming to reduce that gap between the two sides to just one game. 

Both teams are coming off two big losses last week losing by 95 and 88 points respectively. 

Which team can best respond to last week's disappointment and come away with the four points in what looks to be a close one. 


Division 2: 

Chelsea Heights this week will have the chance to further press their claims for a top two finish and a premiership contender as they face the winless Heatherton. 

Chelsea currently sit second on the ladder with a healthy 5-1 record and will be looking to build on recent form and continue their charge in season 2022.

On the other side of the story Heatherton who have slumped to a 0-6 start to the season will be hoping to pick up their first win of the year which shapes up to be a huge challenge for them. 

This clash will be heavily influenced on the matchup between the Chelsea Heights forwards and the Heatherton defenders with the Chelsea Heights forwards impressing so far this season and will take some stopping otherwise the game could become a blowout. 

Hampton Park will welcome Caulfield Bears to the Robert Booth Reserve on Saturday in a clash that looks to go down to the wire. 

Hampton, who will come into this game off the back of a thrilling draw last week to East Brighton will be out to get their names back on the winners list. 

Hampton who last week wasted many chances in front of goals recording 13 behinds will be determined to tidy their finishing in front of goal which will go a long way to them recording the four points on Saturday. 

The Bears however, will be looking to jump their opponents on the ladder with a win away from home, Clayton Hodgson who has started this season in blistering fashion will need to be at his dynamic best for the Bears to push for a crucial win on the road. 

This game shapes up to be the match of the round and will be a thrilling contest which could genuinely go either way. 

In an intriguing matchup this Saturday Highett will take on league leaders Doveton at Turner Road Reserve, the home of Highett. 

Highett, who were on the wrong side of a nail biting contest last week will be hungry for a win this week in front of their home crowd. 

Highett who sit at a healthy 3-3 record are searching for a big scalp to stake their claims as team to watch in season 2022. 

However, it doesn't get much tougher than their opponents at hand this week the unbeaten Doveton Doves who have started the season on fire with 6 wins in a row. 

Doveton will be flying into this contest off the back of a 83 point victory last time out and will look to storm ahead of the rest of the competition with another four points here. 

This game will shape us a tough challenge for Highett and Doveton will go in as warm favorites. 

To round out this week's fixtures, Keysborough will make the journey to Carrum Downs Recreation Reserve under lights to tackle Skye in what looks to be a game the traveling side should win.

Skye who sit at the bottom of the pack having gone winless in their first 6 outings of the season will be determined to get off the mark in season 2022 with a win at home. 

The visitors who head into this clash on the back of fighting loss will be looking to return to the winners list this week and will like their chances this week of doing so. 

Keysborough who pose one of the dominant midfield groups in the competition look set to dominate the midfield again this week lead by Geoffrey Humphreys who is coming off the back of two best on ground performances in a row. But can Skye bring the heat in the middle of the ground and match it with their opposition and cause a huge upset. 

On Paper, this game looks a certainty for Keysborough but don't count out Skye who will be hungry for their first win this season and have the home support behind them. 


Division 3: 

To kick off the round of footy this week in division 3, South Yarra will be going head to head with Ashwood in what looks to be an intriguing game of football. 

South Yarra who head into this clash coming off a thrilling 9 point win last weekend to record their first win of season 2022 will be looking to continue that momentum and pick another win here on their home deck. 

Callum Bradley who produced a stunning 6 goal best on ground performance will need to be at his nest again this week alongside the likes of David Cannizzo and Liam O’Neil if they are to beat the Yarras. 

Ashwood who loom as the favourites in this clash will desperately be looking for the four points here in order to press their claims for a finals appearance. 

This game is a crucial one for Ashwood and their finals hopes but could this be a “danger game” coming up against the Yarras who are playing in front of their fans coming off the back of a team lifting win. 

The game of the round this week is the clash between Black Rock and Carrum Patterson Lakes so sit second and third on the ladder. 

This looms a crucial clash which may shape which team can push for a top two finish this season. 

Black Rock who recorded their first loss of the season in last week's fixture will be looking to respond and get back on the winners list and they will need their midfielders to fire this week if they want to do so.

Carrum Patterson Lakes who sit a healthy 5-2 will be out to send a warning signal to the rest of the competition with a win on the road here. They will need their star goal kicking duo Athony Giuliano and Rohan Bleeker to hit the scoreboard once again to produce a famous win. 

This battle will surely draw a big crowd with a game that looks to be a toss of the coin as to who comes out on top. 

Clayton host the Narre South Saints this Saturday at Meade Reserve in a game which looks set to produce a close affair. 

The Clays and the Saints, who both came off two heart-breaking losses last week by 1 point and 9 points respectively, will be looking to turn the tables this week. 

The key battle in this game may well be the battle of the midfields and whichever midfield group can get first use of the ball will go a long way to determining the outcome of this game. 

To round off this week's fixtures in Division 3 Endeavour Hills face off against Murrumbeena at Barry Simon Reserve. 

Endeavour Hills who head into this clash off the back of an impressive 10 point win will be determined to produce a similar performance this week and cause an upset against the league leaders. 

Murrumbeena who sit pretty at the top of the ladder will be looking to break away from the rest of the pack with a win on the road and they will need star goalkicker Steve Tolongs who leads the league for goals scored to be at his best again this week. 

Murrumbeena will head in as warm favourites but don't count out Endeavour on their home deck in front of their crowd, a result too keep any eye out for this weekend. 


Division 4: 

This week's round of fixtures kicks off with the South Mornington Tigers taking on the Moorabbin Kangaroos in a crucial mid table clash. 

With the Tiger sitting 5th and the Kangaroos in 6th this game will give both teams a chance to press their finals claims in season 2022. 

Last round saw a tale of two sides for these teams with the Tiger recording a disappointing 67 point loss, whereas the Kangaroos stormed to a whopping 159 point win in a stunning display which included a monster 9 goal performance by Mattthew Johansson.

With this game looking like a real tight one, it may be the home ground advantage for the Tigers which may give them a lift or can the Kangaroos replicate their dominant performance last week. 

Dandenong will host Hampton in a must win clash for Hampton if they want to keep their season alive, which a win on the road here will do. 

Dandenong head into this game at an even 4-3 record and they will be out to improve on that and push for a top 4 finish this season. 

Hampton will need their forwards firing this week coming up against a very strong backline in Dandenong and shapes as a key area of focus in what may shape this game. 

Expect Dandenong to get the job done at home but Hampton has often proved not to count them out. 

Another team who will be out to impress this week is Lyndhurst who face off against Lyndale in what looks to be a season defining game for both sides. 

Lyndhurst who sit third on the ladder will be looking to press their claims for a top two berth and emerge themselves as a genuine premiership contender. Lyndhurst came off an impressive victory last week and will be looking to replicate that performance and will need star Lachlan Byers to be at his best again this week after racking up back to back best on ground outings. 

Lyndale who were on the receiving end of a belting last week will be looking to respond with a huge upset win here in order to keep their season alive. 

This shapes as a crucial clash as a loss here for Lyndale may well bury their finals chances and a win for Lyndhurst will go a long way for their hopes this season. 

Bottom placed Cerberus will host second bottom of the ladder Doveton Eagles in what looks to be the tightest matchup of the weekend. 

Both teams have endured a tough start to the season with the Eagles only recording the one win and Cerberus yet to pick up a win. 

This game will be won in the middle of the ground, the team who can get on top in that area will go a long way to recording the four points as this shapes up to a very even contest. 

Could this be the game we see Cerberus pick up their first win of season 2022 in front of their home fans or will the Eagles double their wins for the year.

To round out this week's division 4 fixtures, in what is easily the game of the year it's a battle between the two heavyweights at the top of the ladder in the Frankston Dolphins and Hallam. 

Frankston who are yet to be defeated this season will be looking to make it 8 wins on the bounce to start the year. Hallam who have only recorded the 1 loss for their 6 wins will be aiming to go level with the league leaders and push their chances of a premiership this season. 

The key battle this week will be two star forwards of the competition going head to head with Jack Sharlassian (34 goals) and Richard Mathers (30 goals) producing a number of match winning performances for their teams this season and it may just be a case of which star can deliver this week and steer their side to a massive win. 

In what is set to be a mouth watering contest, this game could go either way with not much to split the two sides so it will be a must watch game with a lot of interest and hype surrounding this game.

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