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Where: Melbourne Cricket Ground
When: Saturday August 30 – 4.45am (BST)
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Carlton will be looking to finish its season on a high when it faces Essendon at the MCG on Saturday.
The Blues will be out for revenge after the Bombers destroyed Mick Malthouse’s side last time they met in round three by 81 points.
After an encouraging last month, the Blues put in their worst performance of the year last week to go down by 103 points against Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval, and with the injury toll building up this will be a tough test.
The Bombers will be looking to lock in seventh place with a win over their rivals, and are in a buoyant mood after their hard-fought win over Gold Coast last week.
Essendon lose Jake Carlisle to a hamstring injury, but welcome back key man Dyson Heppell into the fold after he missed last week’s win with a broken hand, and it’s hard to see the Bombers losing this one.
1. The Bombers dominated the disposals (446-317), marks (150-77), scoring shots (33-17) and inside 50s (55-29) in the last encounter between these clubs. Jason Winderlich and Paul Chapman kicked as many goals between them as Carlton did for the game.
2. Essendon is ranked No. 1 in uncontested possessions, averaging 251 a game. Carlton’s style is in direct contrast, ranked 17th with an average of 205 a match.
3. Although the Bombers have won five more matches than the Blues this season, Carlton has averaged three more points a game than Essendon (85-82).
4. These clubs have met 61 times at the MCG and Essendon leads 34-24 with three draws. Carlton has lost six of seven games at the MCG this season and the Bombers have scored three wins from six matches at the ground.
5. Essendon is ranked second for disposals this season, averaging 386.4 a game. Carlton is 18th with an average of 341.7.
6. Sam Rowe has been one of the Blues’ big improvers this season and this is reflected in his rise in the Official AFL Player Ratings, climbing from 576 to 319 overall.