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AFL's free-kick winners and losers revealed: See how your team has been hurt or helped by the umps

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AFL’s free kick winners and losers revealed with the Bulldogs and Magpies coming out way in front: See how your team has been hurt or helped by the umpires this year

  • Want to settle the argument on which AFL team gets the most free kicks? 
  • Here is all the data you need, with team and individual free kick results
  • After four rounds it might surprise you which teams (and players) make the list
  • Spoiler alert, Richmond might not be the umpire’s darling you think they are  

We’ve all heard the jokes, ‘free kick Richmond’, ‘free kick Sydney’. There is always a perception that the ‘glamour’ clubs get the rub of the green when it comes to the umpire’s whistle.

But what if we told you that Richmond and Sydney are at the bottom of the table when it comes to free kicks so far in 2022? After four rounds, SEN Radio compiled the data on team and individual free kicks across the league and there are some surprising results.

Some of the findings won’t shock you, like Collingwood getting the second-most free kicks in the league with 106 while only having 78 blown against them.

Scott Pendlebury is one player who has earned plenty of free kicks this year. His Magpies have earned a staggering 106 free kicks after just four rounds.

Scott Pendlebury is one player who has earned plenty of free kicks this year. His Magpies have earned a staggering 106 free kicks after just four rounds.

But Richmond (80 frees for, 98 against) and Sydney (79 frees for, 108 against) sitting at the bottom of the table might surprise a few people.

The Bulldogs have had the most discipline or the most luck, depending on the lens you are viewing them through, with 105 free kicks for and just 65 against.

North Melbourne can’t use the umpires as an excuse as to why they are rooted to the bottom of the table as this data shows they have had plenty of opportunity through free kicks.

Likewise the eternal battlers St Kilda, who sit 3-1 on the ladder if you don’t mind, who sit a respectable middle of the pack with 96 frees for and 96 frees against. 

Round 4 Free Kick Ladder
Position  Club  Frees for Frees against  Differential
Western Bulldogs  105  65  40 
Collingwood  106  78  28 
Carlton  91  76  15 
Adelaide  104  93  11 
North Melbourne  102  91  11 
Fremantle  107  101 
Essendon  87  82 
St Kilda  96  96 
Geelong  81  83  -2 
10  Hawthorn  87  90  -3 
11  Brisbane  79  84  -5 
12  West Coast  91  99  -8 
13  Melbourne  80  88  -8 
14  Gold Coast  78  86  -8 
15  Port Adelaide  84  95  -11 
16  Richmond  80  98  -18 
17  GWS Giants  79  103  -24
18  Sydney Swans  79  108  -29

How about individuals? Well it should come as no shock that it would be a Western Bulldogs player that has had the most free kicks and that honour goes to Tim English with 14 opportunities for his club.

Yes Tim, you are number one. You have the most free kicks in the AFL so far this season and that is something to celebrate.

Yes Tim, you are number one. You have the most free kicks in the AFL so far this season and that is something to celebrate.

St Kilda occupy second and third sport with Rowan Marshall and Brad Crouch respectively, who are both enjoying a fine start to the season to help their club’s chances of returning to finals.

Tied for third place is Collingwood veteran Brodie Grundy, who knows his way around an AFL field and how to get free kick opportunities. 

Round 4 individual free kicks for ladder 
Player  Club    For 
Tim English  Western Bulldogs    14 
Rowan Marshall  St Kilda    12 
Brad Crouch  St Kilda    11 
Brodie Grundy  Collingwood    11 
Andrew Brayshaw  Fremantle    10 
Jack Ginnivan  Collingwood    10 
Jason Horne-Francis  North Melbourne    10 
Tom Mitchell  Hawthorn    10 
Toby Nankervis Richmond    10 

Now what about the loosey gooseys. The ones giving away the most free kicks. The coach killers. 

Lucky Melbourne's Max Gawn knows how to kick a goal or two, because he gives away plenty of free kicks - at least in 2022

Lucky Melbourne’s Max Gawn knows how to kick a goal or two, because he gives away plenty of free kicks – at least in 2022

Well that answer may shock you as well, because that gong goes to Max Gawn from the unbeaten Melbourne Demons with 14 free kicks given away. Luckily he knows how to score a few himself to make up for it.  

Clayton Oliver from the Dees also makes the list in equal third spot, while Ned Reeves from the Hawks sits outright second after surrendering 12 free kicks so far this season. 

Round 4 individual free kicks against ladder 
Player  Club  Against 
Max Gawn Melbourne  14
Ned Reeves  Hawthorn  12 
Toby Nankervis  Richmond  11 
Clayton Oliver  Melbourne  11 
Nic Naitanui  West Coast  11 
Brodie Grundy  Collingwood  10 
Matt Rowell  Gold Coast  10 

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