The Road Warrior Ladder – Round Four

Ah yes, what a time to kick off our 2024 Road Warrior Ladder.

Gather Round… where all teams except for the Power and Crows were essentially playing an away game!

It was the Demons backing up their Round Three road form that looked the most impressive, but last year’s winners, the GWS Giants, also look like playing away from either of their two home bases will not present an issue to them again in 2024.

We’ve heard it for years – the teams based outside Victoria have it tougher.

I get it, though. I really do.  Forced to travel interstate almost every second week, some teams clock up enormous miles as they traverse the country to be part of this sport we love.

Meanwhile, we get some Victorian-based clubs cracking the sads when they have to play at Marvel Stadium instead of the MCG, and vice versa. Or those who get a little nasty when a move away from Kardinia Park is floated.

So, how do the teams fare away from home, and who is travelling best at the moment?

The Mongrel has devised a little ladder to assess who is the best road team in the league. Oh, the Vic teams will still get a look in if they’re good enough, and whilst I fully expect a number of fans to say this system is rigged to favour non-Victorian teams… I really don’t care.  Stop your whining.

So, how does it work?

The Road Warrior Ladder is named after one of the best Tag Teams of all time. Don’t come at me with your Demolition garbage, or your Powers of Pain crap… they were Road Warrior rip-offs… who were, in turn, rip-offs of the 1980s movie, Mad Max.

It was called The Road Warrior in the United States because… geez, I’m not a film buff. Do your own homework.

Anyway, you get four points for an interstate win and two points for a win at an away venue that IS NOT played at the venue you consider your home ground. I don’t care if it’s not your home game – you’re still at the ground you play your home games. The Road Warrior Ladder Nazi isn’t concerned with your feelings – just facts.

Tasmania is considered a home game for Hawthorn. You choose to play your home games there – you cop it. Same with GWS and Canberra – if it’s your choice, you wear it.

Now that my belligerence is out of the way, let’s get to business.





2 – SYDNEY – 8 PTS – (59)

3 – GEELONG – 8 PTS (23)

4 – MELBOURNE – 8 PTS (22)

5 – COLLINGWOOD – 8 PTS (15)

6 – CARLTON – 8 PTS (11)

7 – BRISBANE – 4 PTS (70)

8 – PORT ADELAIDE – 4 PTS (30)

9 – FREMANTLE – 4 PTS (26)

10 – ST KILDA – 4 PTS (7)




At this stage, it is too early to start looking for trends, but if we look back at last season, seeing GWS at the top of the pile should come as no surprise. They won our 2023 award for the best Road Warrior team in the game and have knocked off the Eagles and Suns to start this year. The Eagles may well be an easy kill, but winning on the road is damn tough.

Adelaide and Geelong managed just one win apiece last year, so to see the Cats notch up two wins to start the season, their record this year has already surpassed what they were able to do in 2023.

Meanwhile, Carlton are scraping through by the skin of their balls teeth, with just 11 points the difference in their two road wins this season



BRISBANE head to the MCG to face the Dees

ST KILDA are off to Canberra to face the Giants

ADELAIDE try to snatch four point off the Blues at Marvel

HAWTHORN head to Queensland to face the Suns

FREMANTLE hit the road to face Port at Adelaide Oval

RICHMOND head west to face the Eagles




NORTH MELBOURNE head down the highway to take on the Cats



Umpire sensitivity, huh?

I am qthauite saddened that we are seeing games influenced so heavily by trigger-happy officials. The game on the weekend may not have been stolen from the Dockers, but that umpire that called the dissent free kick, after botching the paid mark that was clearly touched, was caught slipping out of the window with Freo’s jewellery under his arm. It was as close to a robbery as you’ll see, as he flat out denied the team a chance to get the lead back, sucking the air out of the stadium in the process.

That we have an issue like this playing such a big role in a 120-minute game is appalling. I know that we have all these weeks for ‘awareness’ of umpires, and having respect for them, and all that garbage, but decisions like the two at the end of the Fremantle-Carlton game do more damage to the reputation of the officials than anything anyone yells over the boundary. How can you have respect for… that?

Carlton were fantastic in the way they fought back, but their brilliance was offset by the ineptitude, and subsequent petulance, of the umpire.

I know my opinion may not be popular – I know society has largely shifted away from vitriol directed at officials. So be it. I prefer people umpiring the game with skin thicker than tracing paper. They’re paid pretty well, y’know? Time to start earning that coin.


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