Live AFL blog: Carlton v Essendon
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Highly motivated arch-rival superpowers meet in front of a packed house in a sudden-death final, having not won a final between them since 2002. It is a recipe for nerves and drama, but once the game is underway, it is hard to believe the Blues won't prevail.
Carlton has more class and depth in its midfield, and the experience of having played in consecutive losing elimination finals, both narrow losses to worthy opponents. Their coach's tenure may rely upon them winning. Most Bomber players have only a 96-point thrashing at the hands of Adelaide in 2009 as a memory of finals, and they won three fewer games this year than the Blues, who were in contention for the top-four until late in the season.