Can the Blues beat Brisbane in a preliminary final?

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This week on the Real Footy podcast, Michael Gleeson, Caroline Wilson and Jake Niall look back on a thrilling semi-final between Melbourne and Carlton and discuss the Blues’ chances against the Lions on Saturday.

How did Carlton defender Mitch McGovern find himself forward with so little time left on the clock? Has Blake Acres etched his name in Carlton finals folklore? And has Sam Walsh’s performance so far in September showed he is clearly the best player from his draft year?

We also discuss who is likely to make way for Jack Martin and Harry McKay in Carlton’s side for the preliminary final, and what happened the last time Carlton played a final against Brisbane at the Gabba. Can the Blues upset the Lions this time around, and how will they want the game to be played if they are to have a chance?

Though the semi-final victory was sweet for Carlton, Melbourne undeniably had the game on their boot only to blow their chances. From Brodie Grundy’s non-selection, to the decision not to use sub Josh Schache, to the crucial errors that brought Melbourne undone, the panel highlights where the Demons went wrong as they suffered a straight-sets exit from finals for the second year in a row. Plus, we hear the case for Melbourne targeting small forwards rather than big ones this off-season.

Like Carlton, the Giants have won through to a preliminary final from the bottom half of the eight. Now they face Collingwood at a sold-out MCG – but ceding home-ground advantage has not bothered them so far this season, especially this finals campaign. Can the Giants go all the way and win the premiership in 2023?

And as Port Adelaide exit the finals in straight sets, and we put the spotlight on some of the performances from their star players when their season was on the line, as well as their team selection.

Plus, how the pre-finals bye has turned this finals series on its head, the importance of rucks in football, tensions between GWS and the AFL and much more.

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