Jobs on the line in the 2012 ‘if only’ Cup

Carlton vs St Kilda

Sunday, 2nd September
Etihad Stadium, 1:10pm

Carlton and St Kilda’s 2012 seasons have both been reduced to a battle for ninth with Richmond in a match which may be Brett Ratten’s last as Blues coach.

The Blues put themselves in the running to clinch a top eight sport with three wins on the trot, including a humiliation of arch rivals Essendon, but inexplicably lost to the Gold Coast Suns, ending their September hopes, and most likely their coaches’ job. Carlton will be without Levi Casboult, who faces surgery after splitting his kidney, and Andrew McInnes who faces a knee reconstruction, while Michael Jamison is a good chance to return from his hamstring injury.

St Kilda will be buoyed by four key resigning through the week, goal sneak Stephen Milne and stoic midfielder Lenny Hayes will be back next year, while Leigh Montagna and Sam Gilbert got two, and three year extensions respectively.

The Saints took out their frustrations at a season which could so very nearly have gone a different way had a tackle been broken with five minutes to go against Sydney on the hapless GWS last week and will be keen to head for their footy trip with a solid performance.

Both teams have the opportunity to dip to the bottom of their lists and blood some young talent, and both would be hoping to put mediocre seasons behind them. It will be interesting to see how the Blues playing squad react to their feeble effort last week, and the furore surrounding the inevitable axing of their coach, and the supposed appointment of Mick Malthouse to take over the reins next season.

Carlton have a terrible record against the Saints in recent times, having beaten them only twice since 2001. St Kilda’s resigning of players through the week and punishing 128 win last week will have them best placed finish on a high.

Prediction

St Kilda by 45.

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