IT'S JUST a few days short of eight years since the last time 20,000 people attended a match at Metricon Stadium.

And Gold Coast is hopeful it will happen again when the club hosts Collingwood on Saturday night.

Last time such a big crowd attended was July 5, 2014 – otherwise known as 'the Gary Ablett Game'.

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Gold Coast had a record of 8-6 and were in seventh place, facing a Magpies team that was one spot above it on the ladder.

07:36 Mins
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Highlights: Gold Coast v Collingwood

The Suns and Pies clash in round 16

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The Suns were in the frame to make their first finals appearance, just four years into the club's AFL life.

But alas, midway through the third quarter, Ablett's – and Gold Coast's – season was wrecked with one Brent Macaffer tackle.

The dual Brownlow medallist had his left shoulder dislocated and required surgery, forcing him to miss the rest of the season and starting a Suns spiral out of the finals picture.

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Shoulder shock for Brownlow favourite Ablett

Gary Ablett in pain after appearing to seriously dislocate his shoulder

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Foundation Sun David Swallow, who finished with a game-high 31 disposals that night, will again run out this weekend.

"I do remember that game," Swallow told AFL.com.au.

"I remember Gaz did his shoulder in the third and we held on to win."

David Swallow tackles Ben Kennedy in Gold Coast's win over Collingwood in round 16, 2014. Picture: AFL Photos

In arguably one of the best five wins in Gold Coast history, Guy McKenna's young team clung on by five points despite playing most of the last quarter without a single fit player on the bench.

Trent McKenzie (hamstring), Charlie Dixon (calf) and Sean Lemmens (head gash) all joined Ablett on the wrong side of the boundary.

But with four goals to Sam Day and two to Dixon and Tom Lynch, the home team triumphed.

Gold Coast's Rory Thompson celebrates victory against Collingwood in round 16, 2014. Picture: AFL Photos

Saturday night looms as a similar contest. A Pies team that has won five in a row and is situated inside the eight, against an improved Gold Coast that is 7-7 and desperate to win to keep its finals dreams alive.

There's a chance of some inclement weather at Carrara for the contest, but the Suns are still hopeful of nudging 20,000, particularly with a parochial Magpie Army sure to show up.

"The Gold Coast is such a great holiday place, a lot of their fans come up," Swallow said.

"It makes for a great atmosphere.

"We got the win all those years ago and hopefully the same happens on Saturday night."