While their form this season probably doesn't warrant another Friday night slot, the Bulldogs displayed a much better brand of footy in the heartbreaking two-point loss to North Melbourne last week and should at least make Geelong, which is coming off the bye, work for the four points. The return of key defender Marcus Adams from injury gives the Dogs much better balance, and he's likely to be the man to stand Tom Hawkins. But the biggest concern for coach Luke Beveridge is what he's going to do to limit the impact of Patrick Dangerfield. The midfield marvel has absolutely destroyed the Dogs in the past two encounters between the teams, racking up a combined total of 74 possessions and six goals. Sitting a game out of the top four, a win is crucial for the Cats if they want to finish the home and away season with a finals double chance.

WHERE AND WHEN: Etihad Stadium, Friday, June 29, 7.50pm AEST
TV AND RADIO: Click here for broadcast guide

R9, 2017, Geelong Cats 16.8 (104) d Western Bulldogs 12.9 (81) at GMHBA Stadium
R19, 2016, Geelong Cats 16.7 (103) d Western Bulldogs 11.12 (78) at GMHBA Stadium
R13, 2016, Geelong Cats 16.4 (100) d Western Bulldogs 5.13 (43) at Etihad Stadium
R16, 2015, Geelong Cats 10.12 (72) d Western Bulldogs 9.10 (64) at GMHBA Stadium
R16, 2014, Geelong Cats 10.9 (69) d Western Bulldogs 7.14 (56) at GMHBA Stadium

1. A possible advantage for the Bulldogs could be marking the ball inside 50, as they are ranked fourth by averaging 12.1 per game. The Cats are equal 10th, with an average of 11.

2. Geelong has dominated the Western Bulldogs for a long time by winning the past 11 matches, including three by more than 50 points. The Bulldogs’ last win occurred in round 21, 2009 by 14 points.

3. The Cats are the worst centre clearance team this season averaging only 10.2 per game. The Bulldogs are 12th with an average of 11.8.

4. The teams have played 14 times at Etihad Stadium with Geelong winning nine games to five, including the past four and six of the past seven. This is the Cats’ first and only match at the indoor venue in 2018.

5. If the Bulldogs lose again it will be the first time since 2013 they’ve had just four wins from the first 14 games of a season. They’ve lost 12 of their past 16 matches since late in 2017.

6. Cat Patrick Dangerfield sits second overall in the Schick AFL Player Ratings with a score on 668. Marcus Bontempelli is the best-placed Bulldog, sitting in 11th position with 539.3 points.

After trying to curtail the influence of Brownlow Medal fancy Shaun Higgins last week, Josh Dunkley could be assigned the task of limiting serial Bulldog tormentor Patrick Dangerfield.

PREDICTION: Geelong by 22 points