This could get ugly for the Bulldogs.
Canterbury have gone from bad to worse in the past few weeks and don’t look like turning their form around any time soon. They face a side that is desperate for points in the race to secure a spot in the top eight.
The Bulldogs will come into this game off the back of a disappointing 28-14 loss to the Rabbitohs.
Manly will be out for redemption after throwing away two points last week against the Tigers. They had the match all wrapped up but simply fell asleep, allowing the home side to overturn a 14-point deficit in the second half to claim a 30-26 win at Leichhardt Oval.
WHAT’S THE POINT?
Des Hasler’s team’s biggest problem this season has been scoring points.
They are ranked last in the NRL for points scored and have only averaged 13.23 points through 21 games. While that wasn’t a big worry early in the season when their defence was holding up, lately they have leaked 26.5 points in the past month.
Playing at ANZ Stadium hasn’t helped them either with six defeats in their past seven matches at their home ground.
Trent Barrett’s side need to find their midseason form – and fast!
After winning seven of eight matches they are now on a slide of four defeats in their past six which is something you don’t want to be doing heading into the finals.
Manly still aren’t guaranteed a spot in the top eight and need to bounce back with a win to all but secure a spot in September. They come into this match in seventh spot but equal with the Panthers and Cowboys on 28 points.
Another stumbling block could be the trip to Homebush. After starting the season with an impressive 6-1 away record, Manly has now lost three straight road games and have lost their past five matches at ANZ Stadium stretching back to the 2013 Grand Final.
MANLY broke a six-game losing streak to Canterbury when they last met back in Round 4.
The performance was a sign of things to come for both sides as the Sea Eagles thrashed the Dogs 36-nil at Lottoland.
Margin bettors will be interested to note that 17.5 points has been the average winning margin between the teams in their past four encounters.
We are all over MANLY here and this should be an easy two points for them.
The Sea Eagles still have plenty to play for this season which cannot be said about the Bulldogs. The positive thing for Manly is that scoring points isn’t an issue with Manly boasting one of the best attacks in the competition.
That is likely to spell trouble for the Bulldogs defence which we don’t think will handle the expected repeat sets of six from halves Daly Cherry-Evans and Blake Green, who led the competition in forcing line drop outs.
Get on a Manly win and back them 13+ in the margins. Centrebet are offering up $2.10 about that happening.
MANLY 13+ WINNING MARGI