Geelong’s journey began way back in 1859. It is the second-oldest footy team in Australia, behind Melbourne, and also the world’s second-oldest professional football club of any description.
Despite their longevity and a who’s who of Australian Football Hall of Fame inductees, it is only since the turn of the millennium that the Cats have converted their powerhouse status into tangible success. They have missed the finals only once since 2007, winning three AFL Premiership titles in the process.
With superstars on every line and plenty of young talent coming through the ranks, Geelong look poised for another strong campaign. Let’s see how the bookies rate their chances this year.
About the Geelong Football Club
|Home ground:||GMHBA Stadium|
|Premierships:||Nine – 1925, 1931, 1937, 1951, 1952, 1963, 2007, 2009, 2011|
|2018 ladder finish:||8th|
Best bookmakers for Geelong Cats betting
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Updated Geelong futures oddsLatest AFL futures odds for Geelong come courtesy of Sportsbet, where new punters can score up to $501 in bonus bets upon joining. Sign up now for free.
|2019 Premiership||Make Finals||Make Top 4||Brownlow Odds||Rising Star Odds||Coleman Odds|
|Jan||$16||$1.80||$3||P Dangerfield $9||–||T Hawkins $12|
|Feb||$17||$1.75||$4||P Dangerfield $8||E Ratugolea $11||T Hawkins $15|
|Mar||$16||$1.75||$4||P Dangerfield $8||J Clark $17||T Hawkins $15|
|Apr||$5.50||$1.04||$1.30||P Dangerfield $4.50||C Constable $15||T Hawkins $26|
Best Geelong bets for the 2019 AFL season
There are dozens of AFL futures markets for Geelong, but where are they likely to return some real value?
Click on the tabs below to get more analysis on these markets:
- Geelong started 2018 as genuine contenders for the flag, but their weaknesses laid bare over the course of the campaign. The midfield trio of Ablett, Dangerfield and Selwood never quite gelled and the team’s all-round defensive game was not up to scratch. The Cats have made a habit of bouncing back when written off, but it would be a surprise if they made a serious play for top honours this year.
- With Adelaide and Essendon expected to play finals, a couple of high-profile clubs might fall out of the eight this year. The Cats are one of those teams on the fringe, so the question is whether they are a better bet than Hawthorn or the Sydney Swans. The Hawks may struggle now that Tom Mitchell is ruled out for the season, so there is value in backing Geelong to feature in September.
- The Cats had four players poll between 13 and 17 votes in last year’s count, so picking a standout candidate is not as straightforward as one might have thought. Patrick Dangerfield starts the year among the favourites in early Brownlow betting, but it would be foolish to ignore Gary Ablett and Joel Selwood at long odds.
- Esava Ratugolea won many admirers before a broken ankle cut short his maiden season only 10 rounds in. The athletic forward remains eligible for the 2019 Rising Star and will be hard to beat if he picks up where he left off and avoids serious injury.
- Geelong have plenty of players who are capable of booting over 20 goals a season, but Tom Hawkins remains the major threat inside the forward 50. The big lad from Finley has topped the club’s goalkicking seven years in a row and is always a serious contender in the Coleman Medal betting.
Geelong 2019 AFL fixture
|1||Collingwood Magpies||MCG||Friday, March 22||7:50pm AEDT|
|2||Melbourne Demons||GMHBA Stadium||Saturday, March 30||7:50pm AEDT|
|3||Adelaide Crows||Adelaide Oval||Thursday, April 4||7:20pm ACDT|
|4||GWS Giants||GMHBA Stadium||Saturday, April 13||1:45pm AEST|
|5||Hawthorn Hawks||MCG||Monday, April 22||3:20pm AEST|
|6||West Coast Eagles||GMHBA Stadium||Sunday, April 28||4:40pm AEST|
|7||Essendon Bombers||MCG||Sunday, May 5||3:20pm AEST|
|8||North Melbourne Kangaroos||Marvel Stadium||Sunday, May 12||1:10pm AEST|
|9||Western Bulldogs||GMHBA Stadium||Saturday, May 18||4:35pm AEST|
|10||Gold Coast Suns||Metricon Stadium||Saturday, May 25||7:25pm AEST|
|11||Sydney Swans||GMHBA Stadium||Saturday, June 1||4:35pm AEST|
|12||Richmond Tigers||MCG||Friday, June 7||7:50pm AEST|
|14||Port Adelaide Power||Adelaide Oval||Saturday, June 22||7:10pm ACST|
|15||Adelaide Crows||GMHBA Stadium||Friday, June 28||7:50pm AEST|
|16||Western Bulldogs||Marvel Stadium||Saturday, July 6||7:25pm AEST|
|17||St Kilda Saints||GMHBA Stadium||Saturday, July 13||7:25pm AEST|
|18||Hawthorn Hawks||MCG||Sunday, July 21||1:10pm AEST|
|19||Sydney Swans||SCG||Sunday, July 28||3:20pm AEST|
|20||Fremantle Dockers||Optus Stadium||Saturday, August 3||2:35pm AWST|
|21||North Melbourne Kangaroos||GMHBA Stadium||Saturday, August 10||7:25pm AEST|
|22||Brisbane Lions||The Gabba||Saturday, August 17||2:10pm AEST|
|23||Carlton Blues||GMHBA Stadium||TBD||TBD|
Geelong players to watch in 2019
Dahlhaus is a big loss for the Western Bulldogs and an excellent pickup for the Cats. A premiership winner in 2016, he is a genuine half-forward who can play either side of the 50-metre arc with ease and adds yet another option for midfield rotations.
Ratugolea was enjoying a breakout 2018 before a broken ankle ended his season in May. Although a finger injury might keep him out for the start of the campaign, the big forward looked fantastic in preseason and should be a contender for the AFL Rising Star.
Clark is yet to play a senior game for the Cats, but his excellent form in preseason has made him an early favourite with AFL fantasy nerds. It is expected the West Australian teenager will start the year as Chris Scott’s preferred option on the half-back flank.
Geelong records, stats and history
- Most matches: 332 – Corey Enright (2001-2016)
Most career goals: 1021 – Gary Ablett Sr. (1984-1996)
Most goals in a season: 129 – Gary Ablett Sr. (1994)
Most goals in a match: 14 – Gary Ablett Sr. (three times)
Best and fairest awards: Four – Dick Grigg (1910-12, 1914) and Garry Hocking (1991, 1993-94, 1996)
- Most wins in a season: 21 (2008)
Most consecutive wins: 23 (1952-53)
Highest score in a match: 37.17.239 (vs. Brisbane, 1992)
Highest winning margin: 186 (vs. Melbourne, 2011)
Highest home attendance: 87,653 (vs. Essendon, 1989)
- Geelong’s paw prints are all over the history of Australian rules footy. They were founding members of both the VFA and the VFL; Tom Mills, one of the sport’s creators, was a prominent figure at Corio Oval for many years; and Charles Brownlow, after whom the AFL’s best and fairest trophy is named, won renown as both player and administrator at Geelong.
Despite their prominence in the VFA years, it was not until 1925 that the Cats won their first VFL Premiership. The next decade produced two more flags, but tough times returned in the 1940s as wartime travel restrictions forced the club into a two-year recession.
The 1950s were considerably kinder. The Cats knocked over a powerful Essendon side in the ’51 VFL Grand Final and repeated the dose against Collingwood a year later. They remain the only back-to-back premierships in the club’s history.
The Geelong squad was littered with superstars in the ’50s and ’60s. Former premiership hero Bob Davis was at the helm when Doug Wade, Alistair Lord and Graham ‘Polly’ Farmer led the Cats the glory in 1963 – the last of the club’s successes in the 20th century.
The ’70s were a lean decade at the Cattery, but a return to the top seemed imminent as the ’80s wore on. Ambitious recruitment under the short-lived tenure of Tom Hafey brought the likes of Gary Ablett, Paul Couch and Greg Williams to the club, and in 1989 they reached the VFL Grand Final for the first time in more than two decades.
With that, Geelong fans were treated to a new kind of torture. Malcolm Blight’s star-studded squad made the grand final four times between ’89 and ’95, yet the Cats fell short on each and every occasion. That resulted in one of football’s great travesties as Ablett finished his 1030-goal career without a premiership medallion.
The post-Blight years were hard work. After Gary Ayres quit in 1999 to coach the Adelaide Crows, former Essendon premiership captain Mark Thompson took the reins and led a long, arduous rebuild. The fruits of that labour were not plucked until 2007, when the Cats smashed Port Adelaide to win their first premiership in over 40 years and usher in an unprecedented era of dominance.
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