Preview: Northern Blues v Sandringham

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The Northern Blues will play their final game of the season today at Preston City Oval. (PHOTO CREDIT: Rose Zarucky)

THE NORTHERN Blues will face Sandringham in its last game of the season this weekend.

With the Blues sitting two spots above Sandringham on the ladder, they will look to finish their season with an eighth win on the board.

The game will take place at Preston City Oval, Northern’s home ground, on Sunday at 1pm.

With finals off the radar for this year, Josh Fraser’s side can aim to finish the year strong with a big win at their traditional home ground.

Last time they met:

The last time the Blues played Sandringham was under the lights of Marvel Stadium in Round 8.

The Blues showed some positives early, leading by three goals after the first term, but ultimately fell short as the Zebras’ comeback rendered the Blues to an 11-point defeat.

Sam Fisher led the disposals count with 26 followed closely by Will Setterfield with 23, while Hugh Goddard was a strong contributor down back against his old side.

Patrick Kerr was the leading goalkicker for the game, slotting three goals for the Blues: however, a shoulder injury means he won’t be in action for the final game of the year.

The game in focus:

Northern will be looking to end the season just outside the eight, having failed to secure a finals spot this year.

With Sandringham having lost its last nine consecutive games, Northern will aim to capitalise on its opponent’s recent run of form.

However, the last game between these two sides will serve as a reminder of Sandringham’s threat.

With Kerr out for the season, the Blues will have to rely on leading goalkickers Jesse Palmer and Matthew Owies to put the score on the board.

Blue focus:

It’s been a memorable year for Liam Stocker, who realised a dream when he was selected by Carlton in the 2018 NAB AFL Draft.

After making his AFL debut earlier in the season, Stocker – who has averaged 18 disposals at VFL level – will have the chance to end the year with a bang.

Overcoming an injury in the middle of the year, Stocker is likely to spend time in the midfield and across half-back in the final game of 2019.

Get excited about:

With both Frank Anderson and Fisher being invited to the Victorian State Draft Combine, they will be looking to impress in their final game for the season.

Both Anderson and Fisher have been Northern’s most competitive and consistent midfielders this year, featuring among their team’s highest disposal winners each week.

Anderson has averaged over 19 disposals and five tackles a game, while Fisher has been Northern’s prime mover in the middle of the ground with over 24 disposals per game.