AFL Grand Final 2021: When is it, how to watch, who is playing, odds?

The AFL Grand Final won’t be played at the MCG for the second year in a row and for only the second time in history outside of Victoria.

Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs have secured their spot after a huge prelim final victories over Geelong and Port Adelaide.

Sporting News looks at everything you need to know about the big dance.

What time is the 2021 AFL Grand Final?

Perth’s Optus Stadium will host the AFL’s Grand Final on Saturday, September 25, with a start time of 5:15pm AWST / 7:15pm AEST.

“The 5:15pm AWST / 7:15pm AEST start time aims to provide fans at the game with the ultimate Grand Final experience by maximising the stadium’s offering while taking into consideration the broadcast audience across the country,” AFL executive Travis Auld said in a statement.


“The AFL, together with the Seven Network, remain cognisant of finishing the match at a suitable time for younger footy fans and, as a result, landed on a timeslot that is earlier than the usual start time for night matches during the season and last year’s Grand Final.”

There will also be a bye week in between the Preliminary Finals and the Grand Final, with the two combatants in the decider having at least 14 days to prepare.

AWST (local) 5:15pm WA
ACST 6:45pm NT, SA

© Provided by Sporting News Optus Stadium

How to watch the 2021 AFL Grand Final?

You can watch the game on Channel 7, live and free-to-air.

However, if you were planning to watch it on Foxtel, then you’re out of luck – the game will not be broadcast live on Foxtel, but Fox Footy will show a complete replay immediately following the match, if you want to re-live your team winning (or losing) the flag.

This is the same for Kayo users – the streaming service will not be broadcasting the grand final, due to contractual obligations. So, your best bet is to sit in front of a TV with Channel 7, and enjoy the biggest game of footy for the year.

AFL Grand Final live stream

The Grand Final can be streamed through the 7plus app, but only on selected devices.

If you own a Telstra TV, Samsung Tizen (2016 and later), Fetch TV, Apple TV, PlayStation 4/5 or Android TV, you can stream the match through 7plus.

AFL Grand Final tickets

All tickets for this year’s Grand Final are now sold out, with the 10,000 general public allocation getting snapped up in just 10 minutes.

Optus Stadium is expected to be full to the brim, with more than 60,000 fans getting the chance to enjoy the season’s showpiece event.

Who is playing in the AFL Grand Final?

Melbourne were first through to this year’s AFL Grand Final, thrashing Geelong 125-42 in the first prelim final on Friday night. 

They’ll take on Western Bulldogs who took care of Port Adelaide by 71 points in the other prelim.

The match is a replay of the 1954 VFL decider in which the Bulldogs, then Footscray, won by 51 points – their first-ever and still one of two premierships in the club’s history.

Melbourne are looking to break the current longest premiership drought in the competition, having not won a flag since 1964.

AFL Grand Final odds

Both sides had emphatic wins to qualify for the decider, but minor premiers Melbourne will go into the game as slight favourites.

The Dees are paying $1.65 to lift the cup, while punters can get $2.25 on Western Bulldogs to win the flag.

Bookies have the line set at 7.5, while Christian Petracca ($6), Clayton Oliver ($7), Marcus Bontempelli ($8) and Max Gawn ($8) are considered the best Norm Smith Medal chances.

Odds via Palmerbet.

Who will present the medals?

The Norm Smith Medal, awarded to the best-on-ground, and the Jock McHale Medal, given to the winning coach will be presented by Andrew Embley and John Worsfold.

Embley and Worsfold teamed up when West Coast claimed the 2006 premiership.

AFL Grand Final entertainment

Western Australian act Birds of Tokyo have reportedly got the nod to perform at this year’s Grand Final.

The ARIA chart-toppers have released six studio albums and previously appeared at the 2013 AFL Grand Final between Hawthorn and Fremantle.

Will there be an AFL Grand Final parade?

The Western Australian capital will host an event but not as a typical Grand Final parade.

The AFL made the decision, prioritising “minimising risk and ensuring the health and wellbeing of the players, staff and wider community is paramount,” a statement read.

“It remains our number one priority and is the anchor of which all our decision making is based as we continue to navigate through the covid pandemic.


“The AFL has made the decision to not hold a traditional street parade this year, we have decided that given the tight time constraints and our continued conservative approach to dealing with the pandemic that it would be a more appropriate option to give fans a free ticketed event, one that will showcase the Premiership Cup and the competing clubs and players on the eve of the Grand Final – those details will be released in coming days.”

When is the Brownlow Medal?

Traditionally, the Brownlow Medal ceremony is held on the Monday night before AFL Grand Final day.

Though last year, it was moved to the preceding Sunday, with that set to continue in 2021.

The AFL has confirmed the Brownlow Medal ceremony will be held on Sunday, September 19.

The medal count will begin at 5:30pm AWST/7:30pm AEST. 

Who will present the Premiership cup for either AFL side?

Since 2004, the AFL has asked each club to nominate a representative to be on hand to present the Premiership cup to the winning team, and this year Melbourne champion Garry Lyon and Western Bulldogs champion Chris Grant have accepted their respective clubs’ offer.

Melbourne – Garry Lyon

Garry played 226 games and kicked 426 goals for Melbourne during his career from 1986 – 1999. A Captain of the Melbourne Football Club for 119 games from 1990 – 1998, Garry is also a five-time All Australian (1989, 1990, 1993, 1994, 1995). Garry represented Victoria on nine occasions, captaining the side in 1994, and was awarded the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Medal for the best and fairest player for Melbourne on two occasions (1990 and 1994). In 2000, Garry was named in the Melbourne Football Club Team of the Century. He also coached Australia in the International Rules Series on eight occasions between 2001 – 2004.

Western Bulldogs – Chris Grant

Chris played 341 games and kicked 554 goals for the Western Bulldogs across 18 seasons from 1990 – 2007. A Captain of the Western Bulldogs Football Club for 76 games between 2001 – 2004, Chris is also a three-time All Australian (1997, 1998, 1999). Chris represented Victoria on five occasions and was awarded the Charles Sutton Medal for the best and fairest player for the Western Bulldogs on two occasions (1994 and 1996). A member of the Western Bulldogs Team of the Century, Chris was also inducted into the Australian Football Hall of Fame in 2012.

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