The Quixotic Adventures of the AFL

The Australian Football League differs from the Victorian Football League in that rather than seeking to consolidate a local, state league as the premier competition of Australian rules football, the AFL seeks to broaden the game’s popularity, participation and fandom. This has an impact on the game’s culture and the kind of teams that are…

The Goalkeeper

Football without a goal is like capitalism with bankruptcy or religion without hell. This is according to Tony Schumacher, the German goalkeeper who was condemned by the world when he knocked out the teeth of Patrick Battiston, a French player, during the 1982 World Cup. Goals are indeed inseparable from football, for it is goals…

What Adam Did Next

The AFL was criticised throughout the 2015 season, and subsequently, for not having dealt earlier with the persistent booing of Adam Goodes in previous years. Here was a legend of the game, being tormented week in, week out, on the footy field: his work place. Mr. Goodes left the game without fanfare. He left the…

Mediate My Football

When I was in primary school, I already had a strong wish to be a journalist. So, I would retype articles from the newspaper: and most of the articles I typed were about sport. Most of the articles were about football, but, of course there were many articles about badminton [that sport at which Indonesia…

On Our Own Terms

The Richmond Football Club has an alliance with Rumbalara Football Netball Club (see this article). This alliance is a means for Richmond to recruit talented young footballers from the north of Victoria. Rumbalara is on Yorta Yorta Country. These are the lands  of notable figures such as William Cooper, Sir Doug Nicholls, Jimmy Little, Deborah…

Richmond, A User’s Manual

I’m doing a zine this footy season. It is based around my experiences as a Richmond fan and my engagements and conversations with the Club, other fans, the suburb, Punt Road Oval and the MCG. This is a continuation of what I do with Reading Sideways. Blogs are great, but sometimes it is nice to have something…

Commercialise my footy

Andy Fuller, University of Melbourne Australian rules football is generally considered the dominant code in our sporting-obsessed nation. It is a hybrid game with contested origins: some elements are drawn from rugby and football, and some from marn grook, the Indigenous game. Whatever its origins, footy is played on suburban grounds, in country fields, on…

Moorabbin and Disposable Heritage

I drove south today. I don’t have any memories of this ground. This was the first time I have been there. The Saints are moving back to Moorabbin after failing to establish themselves at Seaford and not coming to an agreement with Cricket Victoria to share the Junction Oval. This is their other historical home:…

Champions of Rotterdam

A long time ago:  And Sparta became champions. The referee blew the whistle and the players hugged each other; screamed in celebration; some piled on one another in the goalmouth. Coaches in suits and Sparta ties shook hands like gentlemen and embraced as lovers. And then, the crowd ran onto the field. Some players ran…

Reading Sideways