Apr 13, 2023


A highly unhelpful guide to Round Five


The only guide to the round that admits it’s completely unhelpful. What it lacks in insight, it makes up for with wild theories and detours onto unrelated topics.

It’s your unhelpful guide to Round Five.


Adelaide vs. Carlton (AO) 7:40pm Seven/Fox

It’s Gather Round, an original idea of the AFL’s that they didn’t copy from the NRL at all, ok? It even has a different name!

The footballing world’s eyes turn to Adelaide, one of my favourite cities.

If you’re travelling to Adelaide, make sure you visit the Central Market, marvel at the Le Cornu site, eat FruChocs, fritz, Haigh's Chocolates and Mettwurst, all washed down with a Farmers Union Ice Coffee.

Perhaps the funniest moment I’ve had in Adelaide is when a local warned me to ‘never go North of Grand Junction Road.’ He spoke about it like it was The Wall in Game of Thrones.

For South Australia, this couldn’t be happening at a better time, the Crows put on a show last week, and the Power bounced back with a thrilling win.

Now the Crows get a crack at Carlton, who currently sit second on the ladder and haven’t lost a game this season.

And the good news keeps coming for the Blues, with Harry McKay getting his one-match ban for striking Harry Sheezel downgraded to a fine.

The AFL sure does love to send wildly inconsistent messages about protecting the head.

I’m tipping the Crows.


Fremantle vs. Gold Coast (Norwood Oval) 5:10pm Fox Footy

Norwood Oval is a beautiful ground, too beautiful for what Fremantle and the Gold Coast have been serving up this season.

The Dockers have only defeated the Eagles this season and managed to somehow lose to North Melbourne.

For a team meant to be on the rise, they are going in the wrong direction. Part of their problem is their players have forgotten that you are allowed to move the ball quickly.

At the moment, they move it so slowly that their opponent’s defenders not only have time to set up but also organise their weekend plans.

The Suns start to the season is just as bad, just without the expectations. They beat Geelong; only Hawthorn can’t beat Geelong.

What can the AFL do about the Suns?

I think they should rebrand them; that always fixes everything.

I’m thinking the South East Brisbane Disappointments.

Catchy huh?

Happy to hear other ideas.

I’m tipping the Dockers.

Richmond vs. Sydney (AO) 8:10pm Seven/Fox

If you love key forwards, this isn’t the game for you, with Tom Lynch and Lance Franklin both getting out of travelling to South Australia.

Franklin had a knock to the knee, while Lynch really committed to the bit by breaking his foot to get out of Gather Round. It seemed excessive.

On top of that, he tried to get himself suspended for good measure, but you can’t rely on the Tribunal, and they let him off.

Sydney has a plethora of injuries after last week; for Pies fans, a plethora means a large or excessive amount of something.

It’s not a great start to the year for the Swans, who made it all the way to a Preliminary Final last season.

All the talk about Richmond is how the glory days are in the rearview. That must be nice, though, to have glory days.

I have ‘slightly not as bad days’ that I look back on fondly.

I’m tipping the Tigers.


Brisbane vs. North Melbourne (Summit Park) 1:10pm Fox Footy

And we’re off to the lovely Adelaide Hills for this one.

With a capacity of 7,000, the Summit Sport and Recreation Park in Mount Barker could prove intimidating for North’s players.

It’s a great chance for the fans to get up close and personal with the players, and in relative safety too, as Tarryn Thomas won’t be there.

We got good Brisbane last week, as they made the Pies look ordinary, which is some achievement.

The question with the Lions is not their ability when they are on, it’s when they are struggling; they seem too often to go missing when things get hard. It’s very relatable.

Worryingly for North, they haven’t defeated any non-West Australian teams this season and lost to Hawthorn.

Alastair Clarkson has certainly got his team trying hard, but they are not quite there yet.

That said, they do have Luke Davies-Uniacke and Harry Sheezel, who would make anyone excited for the future.

Add another midfielder, say a Jason Horne-Francis type, and the Kangaroos would be really going somewhere.

I’m tipping Brisbane.

Essendon vs. Melbourne (AO) 4:10pm Fox Footy

It’s around this time of the season that the teams with relatively easy draws start to have to answer some serious questions.

Essendon have so far defeated Gold Coast, Greater Western Sydney and Hawthorn, while losing to perennial powerhouse St Kilda.

Now they face the Dees, who looked very good against the Eagles, but so they should, it was an Eagles side missing their top talent, which is mid-level talent in any other side.

A win here and Essendon would take a big step forward to being seen as a legitimate team, proving once again that Brad Scott is always the answer.

What’s most exciting for Dees fans is the opportunity to pull together a cheese board using South Australian produce.

Maybe a bit of Allium Piper or Goat on a Hot Tin Roof? Add a few Maggie Beer products, and you’ve got yourself a plate that will make you friends.

Add some cured meats, olives, pickles, roasted peppers, artichokes, tapenades, almonds, cashews, spicy mustards and don’t forget seasonal and dried fruits, candied nuts, preserves, honey, chutney, or even chocolate.

I’m excited just thinking about it, and I also realise this isn’t that helpful for a footy preview.

Dees to win.

Port Adelaide vs. Western Bulldogs (AO) 7:50pm Seven/Fox

Port salvaged their season last week, although the fact you have to do that in Round Four is a bit of a worry.

Still, now they get a chance to keep that momentum going with the eyes of the world are on their home state.

Ok, maybe not the world but the southern parts of Australia.

Port have so far got belted by Collingwood, lost to the Crows, but have beaten Sydney and Brisbane. It makes no sense.

Aliir Aliir said the team needs more consistency, which is understating it; that’s like saying I need more vitamins.

This will be Tom Liberatore 200th game, and hasn’t he come far? There are so many highlights in his career, but nothing will top the five minutes he played for the Vietnam Swans on an end-of-season trip.

They were taking on their archrivals, the Japan Goannas.

The Bulldogs got annoyed at him for doing that, but to be honest, even slightly inebriated, he looked the most dangerous player on the field that day by some margin.

I’m tipping Port.


Geelong vs. West Coast (AO) 1:10pm Fox Footy

Good news for the Cats, with their practice match against Hawthorn now followed by this light training run.

It’s just what Geelong needs, who, despite last week, still look way off last season’s premiership form.

Luckily, they have Jeremy Cameron who is like a get-out-of-jail-free card, he can get you out of a lot of difficult circumstances.

If the Cats are considering appointing a captain, he would be a great choice.

The bad news for Eagles fans is there is still a lot of this season to go.

It’s hard when you’re not very good and everyone is also injured, which seems to happen a lot to the Eagles.

They’re like the guy at work who is not very good but also calls in sick all the time.

Can the Eagles beat Geelong? No.

Greater Western Sydney vs. Hawthorn (Norwood Oval) 3:20pm Seven/Fox

I imagine the fans will be flocking to Norwood Oval to see this clash.

It’s fitting it’s being played there, as the Hawks could almost be competitive in the SANFL.

The Hawks could be without Will Day, who is appealing dangerous tackle charges, as is Geelong’s Gary Rohan.

It’s a wonderful chance for more inconsistency from the AFL around protecting the head.

The AFL keeps talking about drawing a line in the sand on protecting the head, which is accurate; sand shifts all the time.

With McKay getting off, who knows what will happen with these appeals?

If every decision is wildly different from the others, it’s hard to be wrong or right.

People compare these cases like there is some consistency her, but it’s like a mirage in the desert, any appearance of consistency is an illusion.

I’m tipping the Giants.

Collingwood vs. St Kilda (AO) 4:50pm Fox Footy

I get why Collingwood fans are annoyed that this isn’t being played at home. So rarely do the Pies get to play at the MCG.

The news this week was that Jack Crisp has avoided sanctions for his social media activity.

The AFL Integrity Unit investigated the incident after one of the work experience kids at AFL House explained what social media was.

“You mean people send photos like that? Why?”

It’s a fair question.

Social media is the source of all evil. Before it, everyone lived in harmony; no one was ever mean, every supported each other and football players never got in trouble.

Crisp got off based on his behaviour since the videos and promising to undertake social media education program.

The club wouldn’t say what the program would be, but I imagine something along the lines of ‘don’t go on social media’.

This is a great match-up.

The Saints are heaps good this year, as are the Pies, and this will be a real test of how real both of them are.

Either way, it’s a fitting end game to Gather Round, the AFL’s own original idea and no one else’s.

I’m tipping the Pies.

You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here: https://titusoreily.com/support-titus


The g train

Apr 13, 2023

Titus not as unhelpful this week compared to the previous two. But not complaining.

“Perhaps the funniest moment I’ve had in Adelaide is when a local warned me to ‘never go North of Grand Junction Road.’ “. I assure you, Titus, there is nothing funny about that. Go there at your own peril. Ever been to Lizbef?

“The Saints are heaps good this year”. Yeah, thanks to Harvey&Hayes. Just hope they don’t hit a stobie pole mid year like last season.

If you’re in Adelaide, Titus, we could meet by the balls and grab an AB?

Running Dog

Apr 13, 2023

"Like a mirage in the desert, any appearance of consistency is an illusion."

Actually, Titus, a mirage in the desert gives the appearance of water, not of consistency. But I guess some people can see abstract concepts while others just see dust, salt, bones, sand, rocks, lizards, ants, Japan Goannas, and spinifex. Here in WA we have Lake Disappointment, probably so-named because nobody can ever seem to find it.

A goat on a hot tin roof may seem illusory, but in some deserts the freakin' things can climb trees- if they haven't already eaten them.

Mark S

Apr 13, 2023

Like how you snuck “heaps good” in there, Titus! You’re a clever one.

Greg Brown

Apr 13, 2023

What happened to the pie floater and a pint of West End in Rundle Street? Scratch away that Adelaide blue stone facade and you will find a toothless Glenelg mall rat every time

John S

Apr 13, 2023

Titus, please don't tip the Tigers. We are in enough trouble without your kiss of death....

Floreat Pica

Apr 13, 2023

Titus, why would Pies fans take any notice of what you say about a Sydney v Richmond game?

The Derp

Apr 13, 2023

........ I committed to a whole season of field hockey to get out of going to South Australia. Yep! Even paid my subs!


Apr 13, 2023

Your unhelpful guide makes welcome reading and excellent commentary but rather dubious tips and predictions.Fancy not selecting hot favourites Weagles against the Pussycats I mean the Hawks held the Cats to 5 goals in a half. The Wet toasters are are cementing their new game plan and should run close to demoralising the Cats with speed skill and decision making. Oh wait this is 2023 not 1992/94 One can only dream!

Noel Dees in 2023

Apr 13, 2023


If I don't do my tipping this week and the Crows and Port both get a lose will I get the perfect 9/9 as I default and get all the away teams?

Tex Walker's Undies

Apr 13, 2023

There needs to be a rethink for at least one of the games' tips. I mean, Geelong have always struggled against the Weagles in SA; in fact I'm gonna go as far to say the pussy cats have never beaten West Coast at Adelaide Oval, so if form counts, it's gotta be the Weagles.


Apr 13, 2023

Come now Titus.
Aren't the Barossa and Clare Valleys North of Grand Junction Road?


Apr 13, 2023

Oh, Titus, it’s obvious that you have never been to Norwood Oval. With that concrete wall along the western side the only people who think it’s beautiful would be the East Germans pre-1989. Add in the Norwood Football Club - who still have a chip on their shoulders from Port Adelaide getting into the AFL - & you have the perfect description of ugly.

Son of plugger

Apr 13, 2023

A bit harsh on The Gold Coast Suns, Titus. We should try and understand their full story and how they really represent the part of Qld that’s South of Brisbane. So how about rebranding Gold Coast as “The SOB Stories”?


Apr 13, 2023

"They’re like the guy at work who is not very good but also calls in sick all the time."

Hey, I used to be that guy. I thought I was doing the company a favour. Anyway, it's not easy to come into work every single day when you have an unreliable pyloric valve.


Apr 13, 2023

Hi Titus
I always look forward to your postings each week. I note that you said Sydney made it all the way to the Preliminary Final last year, when in fact they actually made it to the grand final. However, knowing your sense of humor were you suggesting that they never actually turned up for the grand final. Keep up the good work.

maurie Farrell

Apr 13, 2023

It wasn’t just you who didn’t notice we Swans made it to the 2023 Grandy. Geelong didn’t either.

saint peter

Apr 13, 2023

Titus, for your suggestion of wanting names for the Gold Coast Suns, how about Northern Tasmania Hacks. That will solve 2 problems 1/ a team in tassie & 2/ a team on the Gold Coast.

As for "while losing to perennial powerhouse St.Kilda". Are you saying we are a perennial powerhouse because of our 4 wins this season or the fact that we have been in the top 15 sides for many years.

unimaginative name

Apr 13, 2023

I missed these over the last few weeks. So I thought it might be easy to get the ChatbotGPT to write one. Needless to say yours are better. Keep up the work! here is the chatBot on the Cats and Eagles

Welcome to my unhelpful guide to the game between the Geelong Cats and the West Coast Eagles!

Firstly, let's talk about the players. Did you know that some of the players on both teams have pets? That's right, some of them have dogs, cats, and even birds as pets! Some players even bring their pets to training sessions, which is sure to make for some interesting moments on the field.

Now, let's talk about the fans. The Geelong Cats have some of the most passionate and dedicated fans in the league. They love to dress up in their team's colors and paint their faces with the team logo. The West Coast Eagles fans, on the other hand, are known for their love of food. They always bring delicious snacks to the game, like homemade pies and sausage rolls, and are happy to share with anyone who is hungry.

In terms of the stadium, did you know that the lights at the Geelong Cats' home ground can be seen from space? That's right, the lights are so bright that they can be seen from high above the earth. The West Coast Eagles' home ground, on the other hand, has a beautiful view of the ocean. Fans love to watch the sunset over the water while cheering on their team.

Tarax Club

Apr 13, 2023

Titus any chance of the AFL breaking their run of perpetual re-runs of Pirates 🏴‍☠️ of Circumstance? Gil(bert) may be comfortable with the traditional sully(van) to the Adelaide Oval. But jeeze Goody sounded cheezed off with the Deeze being part of the curtain raiser before the Sparkies v Dogs performance. Surely sanity will prevail and the game will be sensibly re-located to the Centennial Park Oval in Nuriootpa. Where some quality local vintages may be had. Keep it simple. Keep it boutique.


Apr 13, 2023

Grand Junction Road....also known as The Mullet Proof Fence.

Floreat Pica

Apr 13, 2023

Ok Titus, game on. I did laugh at your "pie-splain" of "plethora". However, as a literate, reasonably articulate member of the Collingwood legion, I have winced at your inconsistent grammar, spelling and somewhat creative punctuation. Battle lines are drawn . . .

Con Cushion

Apr 13, 2023

Turn it up Titus ... what's inconsistent about the consistency with which The AFL consistently fails to be consistent with regard any matters related to issues of the head? Con.


Apr 13, 2023

Unimaginative name;
I went to a Weagles vs Essendon game many years ago. The WC fans in front brought their entire Chinese takeaway with them, and it was putrid. The smell made me nauseous so who knows how long it had been fermenting. So I question the ChatGPT sources on the ‘delicious food’ front!


Apr 13, 2023

I hope all our interstate visitors enjoy some Farmers Union Iced Coffee while they're here 😋


Apr 13, 2023

Hopefully there's a Plethora of Pies Fans at the last game to watch them play for the Heaps Good Cup

Daniel B

Apr 13, 2023

As a Swans supporter, Titus tipping Richmond is the best thing that's happened to us in over a fortnight.

Jim Tilbrook’s Cheque

Apr 13, 2023

Dear TG. As Titus’ loyal commentators have a reputation for pedantry to uphold, I trust that the smell of the WC fans’ takeaway made you nauseated, not nauseous. An object that makes you feel sick is nauseous, as it makes you feel nauseated.I give you this simple explanatory example:

‘The Collingwood cheer squad was nauseous - they made me so nauseated I could not finish my cheese platter.’

You’re welcome.

Michael Foley

Apr 13, 2023

Tom Lynch (The Richmond one) is out for 12 weeks with an injury.

Never before has the tribunal felt so powerless


Apr 14, 2023

Does the AFL Tribunal consult an astrologer or something before they render a verdict?

That would explain the wild oscillations between deploring in no uncertain terms the merest contact with a player's head and being keen to find a reason - any reason at all! - to look the other way when a player concusses an opponent.

Tamar Lewit

Apr 14, 2023

Yay! The Guide is back! A really good one, please keep them coming Titus.


Apr 14, 2023

Perhaps a tad patronising Titus, explaining the meaning of plethora to Pies fans.
Sorry Pies fans.
Patronising means talking down to people.


Apr 16, 2023

Dear Jim Tilbrook's Cheque
The object that makes you feel nauseous is nauseating. So "the Collingwood cheer squad was nauseating, they made me so nauseous I could not finish my cheese platter" is the correct wording. Like Sydney's loss to Fremantle last week. I was nauseated. Thank you.


Apr 16, 2023

Dear Jim Tilbrook's cheque
You are right & I am partially wrong. My apologies. But common usage seems to trump correctness here. As you were.