Sep 28, 2018


A Highly Unhelpful Guide to the AFL Grand Final 2018


West Coast v Collingwood

The holiest of holy days, Grand Final Day, is upon us.

I was made aware the other day that some people don't follow AFL obsessively. Weird, right? I guess some people don’t want happiness in their life.

Even weirder, some of them will watch the Grand Final and have no idea what's going on.

So, I've pulled together a little guide to help them out.

Here is the only guide you’ll need to this year’s game. It is frequently inaccurate.

Musical Entertainment

If you're new to AFL Grand Final entertainment, you've missed out.

The AFL seems to either do the bizarre, like Angry Anderson singing 'Bound for Glory' while being driven around in a Batmobile, or the ‘so bad it’s beyond awful’, like Meatloaf’s thirteen minutes of wailing.

Last year, they had Las Vegas band The Killers, and they were good, in a shocking break from tradition.

This year it’s the Black Eyed Peas, who have produced some terrific material over the years.

Consider these lyrics from their 2005 hit My Humps.

They say I'm really sexy

The boys they wanna sex me

They always standin' next to me

Always dancin' next to me

Tryin' a feel my hump hump

Lookin' at my lump lump

Whatcha gonna do with all that ass

All that ass inside your jeans

I'm a make make make make you scream

Make you scream make you scream

Whatcha gonna do with all that junk

All that junk inside that trunk

I'm a get get get get you drunk

Get you love drunk off this hump

Whatcha gonna do with all that breast

All that breast inside that shirt

I'm a make make make make you work

It’s as if Shakespeare himself had risen from the grave to pen these lyrics. Such an empowering song.

Jimmy Barnes is also performing, I assume separately, although, seeing him perform those lyrics would be something.

Barnes' daughter Mahalia will perform the national anthem, and Mike Brady will again be awoken from his hibernation to perform Up There Cazaly.

Jimmy Barnes will also perform at the Virgin Australia Premiership Party, a free concert after the game at the MCG.

Key Timings

8.00am: Melbourne Cricket Club gates open, rich people enter

9.30am: General public gates open to the great unwashed

1.32pm: Retiring greats and award winners' motorcade

1.40pm: The Black Eyed Peas and Jimmy Barnes perform

2.08pm: Mike Brady performs Up There Cazaly

2.11pm: Umpires enter

2.13pm: Teams enter

2.24pm: Welcome to Country by Aunty Joy Wandin Murphy

2.25pm: Delivery of the premiership cup

2.26pm: National anthem performed by Mahalia Barnes

2.30pm: Grand final begins

Half time: Auskick, grand final sprint

5.15pm: Final siren (assuming no extra time), presentation of medals and the premiership cup.

7 pm: Premiership party. Free concert, Jimmy Barnes performs

7.33pm: Presentation of the premiership team with the premiership cup

TV Coverage

Channel Seven has exclusive broadcast rights to the Grand Final, so get ready for ads. If you like gambling ads and ads telling you about shows coming up on Seven, you will be in heaven.

Leading the coverage as always is Bruce McAvaney, who despite performing a bit of a parody of himself at times, is a true pro and about a million times better than the other current options.

He uses the words ‘clever’ and ‘special’ a lot and will occasionally cause a lot of awkwardness by describing something on the field as delicious.

This will be followed by a moment of silence in the commentary box while everyone pretends it didn’t happen.

Alongside Bruce, will be Brian ‘BT’ Taylor. ‘Polarising’ would be an understatement.

BT tries to inject ‘personality’ into his calling, the problem being, it’s his personality.

Providing special comments will be Cameron Ling and Wayne Carey.

If you’re a fan of listening to people stating the obvious and repeating themselves constantly, you’re going to be very happy all day long.

Cameron Ling has set a new benchmark for inane comments. Not only does he do a fair trade in stating the obvious, he says things like this ‘the Cats team that played Sydney may beat the Crows, but if it's the Cats team who played Richmond, then they may lose.’

Wayne Carey is there as a reminder that no matter how many horrible things you do, as a footballer you will be welcomed back as nothing happened.

The boundary reporters will be Matthew Richardson and Daisy Pearce.

Pearce, frequently interrupts broadcast with insightful comments and useful information; she sticks out like a sore thumb.

Matthew Richardson is also great and has a big advantage over a lot of his colleagues in commentary because he’s actually likeable.

The Teams

West Coast


The West Coast Eagles were founded in 1986, when the Victorian clubs, desperate for money, allowed them to join for a huge licence fee.

The money from the licence fee went to the Victorian clubs which kept them afloat.

Those same clubs now complain about the Eagles all the time, even though a lot of them probably only exist because the non-Victorian teams came on board.

The Eagles have been a highly successful team, winning premierships in 1992, 1994 and 2006.

This means they are hated by a lot of people in Victoria but not as much as Dockers fans hate them.

A West Coast victory will see Perth erupt but will never be mentioned in Victoria again unless the Melbourne media can find a way to question its legitimacy.

An Eagles victory will see Dockers fans leave Western Australia for a few months or enter their panic rooms.



The Collingwood Football Club was formed in 1892, immediately plunging the world into crisis.

In the year Collingwood was founded, Charles Darwin died.

The world’s greatest ever scientist had self-selected to leave the planet.

The founding of Collingwood also led directly to the end of Australia’s long economic boom that had begun in the 1850s with the gold rushes. The timing is uncanny; it can’t be disputed.

A great global depression followed and was most extreme in Australia, hitting Victoria harder than anywhere else in the world. So, the closer you were to Collingwood, the worse it was.

There was a decreased demand for wool globally, which was Australia’s core industry, public works projects fell like dominoes and banks closed their doors.

Industrial unrest occurred on a massive scale. Australia’s great maritime strike and the shearers' strike occurred.

This resulted in massive unemployment and eventually the total collapse of Australia’s economy.

To make matters worse, Australia was hit by terrible drought as if the founding of this club had upset the gods themselves.

All because of Collingwood.

I haven’t even touched on the Spanish-American War.

It’s only got worse since then.

After Collingwood’s arrival, we’ve had two world wars, the Great Depression, the invention and use of the atomic bomb, Meatloaf’s Grand Final performance and worst of all, the music of Nickelback.

As a neutral, the hard part in supporting Collingwood in the Grand Final is you have to answer two questions, ‘can you bring yourself to support the Collingwood Football Club, even for one day?’ and ‘Do you want Eddie McGuire to be happy?’

Even if you jump the first hurdle, it’s hard to jump the second.

Choosing a side to support if you barrack for neither is hard. The battle for hearts and minds has gone like this:

Collingwood: Get behind us footy fans!

Footy Fans: No thanks.

West Coast: Get behind us!

Footy Fans: Also no.


The Bureau is saying it will be 13 degrees with a 70 per cent chance of rain, so terrible. Thanks for nothing Melbourne.


These teams have met twice this year, in round 17 at the MCG and the Qualifying Final a few weeks ago in Perth.

The Eagles won both of these, but the Qualifying Final was very close.

Despite finishing higher on the ladder, the Eagles have one day less rest and have to travel to Collingwood’s home ground to play.

Eddie McGuire has been much quieter on this issue than when he thought his team might have to travel to Perth for the Preliminary Final. Weird.

Almost no one predicted these two teams to make it this far, despite them finishing second and third on the ladder and both have shown an ability to defy expectation, making this hard to tip.

The Eagles major concern is they’ve barely played in the past months. They had the bye week, got a week off after beating Collingwood and then had Melbourne forfeit last week’s game, meaning they only got to run a light training drill instead.

Collingwood has some injury concerns, but that’s hardly new. They play the MCG well, and the weather should suit them.

Still, I think the Eagles key forwards should prove difficult for the Pies, and I’m tipping the Eagles by 20 points.

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Sep 28, 2018

Did you realize you'd forgot to hit "publish" as you were leaving for the pub? Been hanging out for this all day! Up the Eagles!


Sep 28, 2018

"In the year Collingwood was founded, Charles Darwin died."
That stat is going to be the gift that keeps on giving.


Sep 28, 2018

Who gets Normy?


Sep 28, 2018

I dunno about BT being polarising.
The word polarising tends to imply and even spread of like/hate. Is something really polarising if pretty much everyone hates it and only one person loves it?

Brett Jantzen

Sep 28, 2018

Bravo for stating the obvious about Cameron Ling stating the obvious...constantly.

Bruce M

Sep 28, 2018

Titus, you neglected to mention the rabbit plague in the 1890s that was undoubtedly Collingwood related. Myxomatosis was introduced in 1951 to finally rid the world of Collingwood, but like the rabbit they bounced back to win the 1953 premiership from red-hot favourites Geelong (from whence the rabbits first came). I'm sure you can see the connection.


Sep 28, 2018

Excellent introduction to the Grand Final for the uninitiated.
I can’t believe Collingwood’s founding didn’t make it into the Wikipedia list of events in 1892, but Liverpool’s did. Maybe Eddie McGuire wasn’t around then (though it’s hard to remember a time when he wasn’t).


Sep 28, 2018

And several times Bruce will call that someone has gone out wiiiiide when he has kicked it straight down the line. Really really annoying

Colin Rowley

Sep 28, 2018

My weekend is set now having read your Highly Unhelpful Guide. HUG for short. I'll be cheering on the bar staff at the Stolberg during the game.


Sep 28, 2018

Darwin died 10 years earlier. He knew something was up.

Kafka’s Ghost

Sep 28, 2018

Bruce might know his stuff, but every utterance a rhetorical question is really aggravating, isn’t it?


Sep 28, 2018

Don't Collingwood realise there is a thriving T-shirt industry from other clubs saying the following " I barrack for the (insert favorite club), my second tram is whoever is playing Collingwood".

Get behind the Pies? That's a NO from me!!!


Sep 28, 2018

God you're good.


Sep 28, 2018

You are absolutely right, aren't you?

Richard Mcloughlin

Sep 28, 2018

Great work Titus from the 1 Collingwood supporter livong in Adelaide. Apparently. Your history lesson will be part of my Term 4 curriculum.

Rat Man

Sep 28, 2018

In 1892, Ballarat was the fourth biggest city in Australia with its own industries, school of mines, brewery and cultivated accent (this is true, I read Mark Twain and he is always right). Fuck you Colingwood, now even Geelong thinks we’re a bit odd.

Brynn Mathews

Sep 28, 2018

I'll be watching the game in the hope of a Collingwood loss and seeing Eddie McGuire crying again, anyone would think he had money instead in it! (the last is an ironic statement)

Brynn Mathews

Sep 28, 2018

"invested" not "instead"...bloody predictive text!@#$$%!


Sep 28, 2018

Agreed...tho I believe the expression for single-mindedly disregarding the entire population (including the infirm and the unwell) to declare themselves an incredibly self-involved “expert” with no regard for impartiality or honesty is called Trumpism or to go the “whole Trump”.
Are the media stocks so low that we have to bear this idiot along with Richardson? Ling played his way through premierships amidst a team of greats whereas Richo was the only tall player at a 3rd rate club and he struggled to attain mediocrity. How the hell are either “experts” or commentators? Comments normally imply a thorough understanding of either the situation or a real grasp of tactics.....
I’ll put up with enthusiasm and “delicious” over those two dullards every day of the week....


Sep 28, 2018

What about the main interest in the game!!???? The umpires favourite two teams (the two with the highest +ve differential) have made it to the big day. What will the umps do now, give them both 40 free kicks, make it even and put them both in unfamiliar territory or go to the old default position and give the pies a boost?? This is the most interesting outcome of a game that most of us don't care about. My money is on the last option.

Stix the Hardman

Sep 28, 2018

Only one thing comes close to Watching my team in the GF and that’s watching the Collywobbles kick in and the Maggie’s go down after the siren by a point.

Don’t forget Bruce asking “ is there still a chance “ after a 2 goal come back, brings them within 110 points with 10 min to go in the last


Sep 28, 2018

Daisy Pearce “ he’s coming to the bench with what appears to be a very sore knee & now he’s going down into the rooms , it looks like he won’t b playing again tonight & possibly the rest of the season “
-said player returns to the field 5 mins later
Useful insight


Sep 28, 2018

As a West Coast supporter I’ve copping a lot of flak during the finals series - not so much from opposition supporters as from Freo supporters who are now quite accustomed to barracking for other teams at this time of year.

Myk Aussie

Sep 28, 2018

Well Titus thank f...k its still a day game Grand Final! We get to watch the game at 10pm Fri night in Edmonton Canada at a sports bar with the Aussie Footy club guys and girls! I hope the AFL bosses are never ever stupid enough to have a night GF as all footy players/supporters in Canada and USA would be so pissed off! Daisy Pearce is damned intelligent I agree!

Mad Dees fan

Sep 28, 2018

Always a winner - love the commentators profile delicious

Rich person

Sep 28, 2018

Until reading your HUG, I was perplexed. Of the two competing teams, for whom should I barrack? Your “Do you want to see Eddie happy?” comment has helped greatly. Thank you


Sep 28, 2018

I hope Pies win, I don't see any problem with that. The basis of hatred towards them defies logic but I guess everyone has to hate something. I want them to win for no other reason than to prevent Essendon and Carlton holding the premiership record on their own........

Swampy Pete

Sep 28, 2018

I honk it will be four goals to Colliwobbles from free kicks in the goal square. Eagles will still win by four


Sep 29, 2018

Agree about Wayne Carey-how the actual f***is this man allowed on tv? Total douchbag with no respect for women, the law, cops and Botox. What a clown. Makes me want to "glass" the tv when he comes on.


Sep 29, 2018

Titus, I think you are way too kind about the commentary team. Bruce. Thank god that Richmond, Crows and Geelong are not playing this year, so we don't have to hear about his lovechild's, DUSTY!!!! and Danger!! and any Crows player. He is the worse. I think I hate him more than Collingwood, and thats saying something! The rest of them, well, this is the worse commentary team ever put together - thank you Channel 7.


Sep 29, 2018

I thought I heard Bruce Macaveny refer to #46 for Collingwood as “massive Cox” at one stage during the preliminary final call. Hilarious

Julians Postie

Sep 30, 2018

I thought after your line about the other commentators taking a moments silence after Bruce says 'delicious', you were going to say they were digesting it. Opportunity missed Titus.

The Great Enzo

Sep 30, 2018

very droll re: other commentators digesting Bruce's delicious expression
Another reason that Collingwood is so hated is because of all the premierships bought during The Great Depression with gambling money. The trend continues to this day with toxic Hawks + their pokies.

Andrew Rogers

Sep 30, 2018

Bruce, stick to calling the games champ.

Frosty of Collingwood

Oct 01, 2018

Lucky he didn't play for Collingwood - that would be another black mark according to others here.

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