Beyond the GF – Why the MCG Contract doesn’t pass the Stink Test

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Bjo187

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I'm Victorian but would like to see it shared around. The one thing I haven't liked the past 2 years though is all Vic grand finals being played interstate, they would have been great here, bad timing though.

Anyhow maybe we could do 1 in every 4 at either one of Perth, Adelaide (make them put in temporary stands on the hill to increase capacity), Sydney at the Olympic stadium, and Brisbane at the new Gabba which will hold over 50k. I would actually get the state governments of those places to pay to host the grand final, similar to what Brisbane did two years ago by paying 20 million dollars to the AFL for hosting rights.

I'd also like to see some flexibility in the years. For example if you have two interstate clubs it doesn't make sense to have the grand final at the MCG and if you have two Victorian clubs it doesn't make sense to have it interstate. So there would need to be some flexibility in scheduling. So say for example over the 16 year period each of those other four states gets it once and they can potentially nominate the year that they want it in the back half of the season, if one of their local teams is doing well and looks like making the grand final, nominate and bid on hosting it that year (Ie. One year wce and Freo were top 4, one year syd and gws were top 4).

Anyhow this whole arrangement you would think could be easily altered by just adding another 10 years or so onto the MCG arrangement to allow for these years under the contract to be distributed to other states once in every 4 years. I think it's good for the national footprint of the game.
 

Bjo187

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Actually on second thoughts allow each state to bid on it every four years. Then it goes to the highest bidder and you have them competing against each other and sending more money into the coffers of the AFL.
 

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Senor M

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Actually on second thoughts allow each state to bid on it every four years. Then it goes to the highest bidder and you have them competing against each other and sending more money into the coffers of the AFL.

Queensland only paid $20mil to the AFL for 2020.

What makes you assume that other states will pay more than that each year, remembering that the current AFL agreement with the MCC & the Victorian government averages out to approximately $25mil per year for 20 Grand Finals.
 

Bjo187

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Queensland only paid $20mil to the AFL for 2020.

What makes you assume that other states will pay more than that each year, remembering that the current AFL agreement with the MCC & the Victorian government averages out to approximately $25mil per year for 20 Grand Finals.

Because qld paid 20 million for it in a year where there was not really any competition for it due to covid, no preparation time, most of the players already based in qld. Places like Perth and Adelaide would throw big money at it in the future as they don't really have any major events and the tourism dollars and exposure for their cities is massive for the number 1 tv event of the year.
 

bh90210fan

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AFL membership is not transferable.

Thanks for proving that you have no idea how the membership works mate :thumbsu:
They don’t have photo ID on them. Let’s not pretend it’s like breaking into Fort Knox here.
 

Senor M

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Because qld paid 20 million for it in a year where there was not really any competition for it due to covid, no preparation time, most of the players already based in qld. Places like Perth and Adelaide would throw big money at it in the future as they don't really have any major events and the tourism dollars and exposure for their cities is massive for the number 1 tv event of the year.

But will it be over $25 million every year?

That's the question that needs to be answered, otherwise the AFL is throwing away a perfectly good contract for the Grand Final for no benefit.
 

Bjo187

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I would expect so, they could also price hike the ticket prices because people are willing to pay overs for one off events. It's one of those things the afl would look at as growing the game so the payback will be long term not just financial. The football states will pay well overs, Sydney and Brisbane will pay less but the exposure of the game into those states will pay dividends long term for the afl.
 

The_Wookie

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Queensland only paid $20mil to the AFL for 2020.

Queensland also paid a couple of million into a grand final legacy fund for facilities upgrades in Queensland.
 

Kwality

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Actually on second thoughts allow each state to bid on it every four years. Then it goes to the highest bidder and you have them competing against each other and sending more money into the coffers of the AFL.

That is exactly why the closed door is sleazy.
 

doppleganger

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I can see the side of the argument for keeping the grand final in victoria from a tradition and commercial standpoint, but the idea that Victorian clubs dont have a home ground advantage at the MCG against non vic clubs in a grand final is patently nonsense and the worst argument that is made against the grand final moving.
The argument is that the advantage is reduced.

If the G in a H&A game is worth say 8 points to a regular line, the GF advantage would be a fraction of that.

And when you are getting down to 3 or so points it doesn't really matter.

Mentally strong teams lift and perform on GF day, and mentally weak teams (Collingwood 2003, Adelaide 2017, GWS 2019 etc.) capitulate and then fall right away.
 

doppleganger

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I assume by "sh*te stadium deals" you mean the inability of some Melbourne clubs to fill seats in Melbourne? When you're only expecting 15k a game, most of which are paying GA prices (or less thanks to cheap memberships), it's not the fault of the stadium deal that you can't turn a profit. Especially when you're paying no rent.

Although are you actually agreeing with me that the AFL should not be the primary entity signing stadium deals? Let each club negotiate with stadium operators, or even pool with other clubs and build their own.
When you have a break even of high 30k, it is unrealistic to expect clubs like Melbourne to meet that at Etihad.

And no, the AFL negotiates with the MCC directly and it owns Etihad. Ultimately the AFL arranges the fixture, so what good would a club like Carlton have in trying to stay at Princes Park when the AFL aren't going to fixture games there anymore??

The H&A needs fixing well before the GF gets a look in.
 

Papa G

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Queensland only paid $20mil to the AFL for 2020.

What makes you assume that other states will pay more than that each year, remembering that the current AFL agreement with the MCC & the Victorian government averages out to approximately $25mil per year for 20 Grand Finals.

Where did you get $25 million from? The Vic Government paid $225 million over 32 years and that isn't actually cash, its in kind upgrades. The Vic Government actually paid next to nothing for the Grand Final. That is why is is such a disgraceful and dumb deal
 

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doppleganger

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What you clearly articulate: they sell "home" games and end up travelling?
The 1920s version of home & away is long gone, e.g the Suns home game in China, didnt the Saints play a home game there ? The away team was always Port.
How was that recorded in your 'home' & away' stats . Nothing to see there??

Are you simply stuck in the days of Vic Park, Prince's Park, when travel was a ride down the highway in an old bus ?
I am well aware my own clubs advantage is playing 10 games against travelling clubs where minimal crowd support is a factor - remember the brothers Scott complaining about the passion of the crowds in Perth.
Your travel shtick is inane.

All sports world wide have home and away.

The EPL sometimes having 8 teams in London, doesn't change fixture when London teams don't travel as much as Newcastle would.

And yes, if travel is the disadvantage than it is obvious that Hawthorn have done themselves a disadvantage by moving games to Tassie and travelling 9 times per year...pity the results again show that travel ain't an issue.
 

Senor M

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Where did you get $25 million from? The Vic Government paid $225 million over 32 years and that isn't actually cash, its in kind upgrades. The Vic Government actually paid next to nothing for the Grand Final. That is why is is such a disgraceful and dumb deal

The sports package (which includes upgrades to 2nd tier venues including Ikon Park, Victoria Parks, Mars Stadium, Casey Fields & Whitten Oval) was a total of $500mil for a 20 year extension of the Grand Final deal from 2038-2057 (which has now been extended in the past two years under agreement).

If you don't know what you're talking about, just say it Papa G rather than embarrassing yourself again.
 

Kwality

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Your travel shtick is inane.

All sports world wide have home and away.

The EPL sometimes having 8 teams in London, doesn't change fixture when London teams don't travel as much as Newcastle would.

And yes, if travel is the disadvantage than it is obvious that Hawthorn have done themselves a disadvantage by moving games to Tassie and travelling 9 times per year...pity the results again show that travel ain't an issue.

I'm happy to advise I have no idea what the EPL does, given its relevance to AFL footy.

As for the Hawks its members get make up games in Melbourne, is that 2 home teams, no away teams.
We have a national comp that inherited home & away from an era long gone, time to get realistic over what we have got in my view BUT I do understand why some clubs would be terrified by change.

Remember too, playing sides that are on the road is an advantage for my club compared to the Melbourne clubs.
 

Rob

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When you have a break even of high 30k, it is unrealistic to expect clubs like Melbourne to meet that at Etihad.

That's been completely debunked though, because it did not include membership income. So say someone had a $550 membership with reserved seat, you'd think that's $50 per game when it comes to the "break even" figure. It was actually zero, and only spectators paying at the gate were included. That's why the break even figure kept increasing every year when membership numbers went through the roof, as the vast majority of match day income was from their members.

If the break even of "high 30k" were true, then some clubs would be forking out millions to the stadium every year. Club financials show that's not the case, in fact there's very little evidence of payments by clubs to stadiums at all. Think about it, a crowd of 15k at Docklands means a shortfall of around $600,000 (i.e 20k x $30 average ticket price). No club was paying $600k to the stadium operator for a game.

And no, the AFL negotiates with the MCC directly and it owns Etihad. Ultimately the AFL arranges the fixture, so what good would a club like Carlton have in trying to stay at Princes Park when the AFL aren't going to fixture games there anymore??

The H&A needs fixing well before the GF gets a look in.

But that's my point though - short of setting minimum standards for stadiums, clubs should be able to play where they like with no AFL involvement. Obviously AFL clubs shouldn't be allowed to play in hovels with sub standard facilities, so the AFL clearly will have a role in enforcing that. If Princes Park meets those minimum standards, why the hell shouldn't Carlton be allowed to play there? The reason is because the AFL signed deals with the MCG and Docklands guaranteeing a minimum number of games.

Insanity.

Now you have the absurd situation where the AFL owns a stadium and lets it out to certain clubs. Talk about a massive conflict of interest. Take out any argument about how good or bad the stadium deal is, it's clearly a ridiculous arrangement that no other major sporting body in the world would have got involved in.

How could anyone possibly agree with the league doing that?
 

bh90210fan

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The argument is that the advantage is reduced.

If the G in a H&A game is worth say 8 points to a regular line, the GF advantage would be a fraction of that.

And when you are getting down to 3 or so points it doesn't really matter.

Mentally strong teams lift and perform on GF day, and mentally weak teams (Collingwood 2003, Adelaide 2017, GWS 2019 etc.) capitulate and then fall right away.
The advantage a few lower seeded Victorian sides received on grand final day was literally the difference between winning and losing
 

doppleganger

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I'm happy to advise I have no idea what the EPL does, given its relevance to AFL footy.

As for the Hawks its members get make up games in Melbourne, is that 2 home teams, no away teams.
We have a national comp that inherited home & away from an era long gone, time to get realistic over what we have got in my view BUT I do understand why some clubs would be terrified by change.

Remember too, playing sides that are on the road is an advantage for my club compared to the Melbourne clubs.
Hawthorn are an MCG tenant, they get 9 MCG games most years (and yes just 9 in 2022), and they travel 9 times.

Port, WC, Adelaide, Freo get 12 games at their stadiums and only travel 10 times.

Talk about inequality.
 

The_Wookie

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Where did you get $25 million from? The Vic Government paid $225 million over 32 years and that isn't actually cash, its in kind upgrades. The Vic Government actually paid next to nothing for the Grand Final. That is why is is such a disgraceful and dumb deal

actually its cash, paid to the AFL to use for upgrades for its privately owned and operated stadium, and that funding was available 30 days after the signing of the agreement, so long as the AFL had an account set up for it.

And then theres sixty million in training facility upgrades on top of that.
  • $20 million to redevelop Ikon Park into the home of women’s football
  • $15 million for the Female Friendly Facilities Fund to boost access for women and girls across Victoria
  • $13 million for Stage 2 of the Moorabbin Oval redevelopment, to enable the Saints AFLW team to play there from 2020
  • $10 million to improve playing conditions at Casey Fields and Whitten Oval for AFLW competition
  • $2 million for infrastructure upgrades for AFLW clubs at Victoria Park
And use of a block of large block of land (New Quay) outside the stadium precinct to build a new hq on for the next $40 years for a single dollar a year, and then buy for the value of the unimproved land if they wish.
 

doppleganger

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That's been completely debunked though, because it did not include membership income. So say someone had a $550 membership with reserved seat, you'd think that's $50 per game when it comes to the "break even" figure. It was actually zero, and only spectators paying at the gate were included. That's why the break even figure kept increasing every year when membership numbers went through the roof, as the vast majority of match day income was from their members.

If the break even of "high 30k" were true, then some clubs would be forking out millions to the stadium every year. Club financials show that's not the case, in fact there's very little evidence of payments by clubs to stadiums at all. Think about it, a crowd of 15k at Docklands means a shortfall of around $600,000 (i.e 20k x $30 average ticket price). No club was paying $600k to the stadium operator for a game.



But that's my point though - short of setting minimum standards for stadiums, clubs should be able to play where they like with no AFL involvement. Obviously AFL clubs shouldn't be allowed to play in hovels with sub standard facilities, so the AFL clearly will have a role in enforcing that. If Princes Park meets those minimum standards, why the hell shouldn't Carlton be allowed to play there? The reason is because the AFL signed deals with the MCG and Docklands guaranteeing a minimum number of games.

Insanity.

Now you have the absurd situation where the AFL owns a stadium and lets it out to certain clubs. Talk about a massive conflict of interest. Take out any argument about how good or bad the stadium deal is, it's clearly a ridiculous arrangement that no other major sporting body in the world would have got involved in.

How could anyone possibly agree with the league doing that?

Back in 2011, when St Kilda were still a finals team, St Kilda is set to post a loss this season of between $1.5 million and $2m because of its unsatisfactory deal at Etihad and has requested that all home matches next season be played at the MCG.

The Melbourne based clubs have been shafted for decades during H&A, all because of shite stadium deals.

That needs to be fixed well before any movement with the GF...but you don't have WA or SA wowsers sooking about that as they have been benefiting from the H&A fixture for decades.
 

doppleganger

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Here is the allocation of the last GF at the MCG


Forget that its GWS, the allocations are the same, let's go back 2 years and say it was Adeaide v Richmond. Adelaide even have the bigger supporter base.

17,000 go to each clubs members. Fine. Even Keel so far.

Now it gets interesting

MCG membership: 23,000 according to that article. How many Richmond supporting MCG member are their compared to Adelaide? Sure there definitely would be a fair few neutrals in the MCC but you'd think every Tigers MCC member would find a way to get in. Lets give them half the MCC Reserve Lets call it 11,500 tigers fans to say 500 Crows fans and the other 11,000 neutrals.

Okay now we're sitting at 38500 to 17500.

Lets halve the Allocation to of AFL members to 18,000. From the article Gold AFL Members of competing clubs are given preference. How many AFL members do you reckon Adelaide have compared to Richmond? AFL members are also transferable. So how much easier is it for a Richmond supporter, living in the same city as 99% of AFL members, find someone friend family or otherwise to give them their ticket?

Let's give 11500 to Richmond, 500 to Adelaide and 6000 to the neutrals.

Now we are sitting at 50,000 Richmond supporters to 18,000 Adelaide supporters

4000 Medallion club members. Being a Melbourne thing, you expect almost all of these would be Melbourne based. I'm sure these tickets too could be farmed out to a local you know if you, as a say Saints supporter doesn't want to go. Are you more likely to have friends or family that are Tigers or Crows supporters? Exactly. So let's give 2000 of these tickets to Tigers fans, 1800 to neutrals and 200 to Crows fans.

52,000 to 18,200 now.

5000 to competing clubs? They tend to resell a lot of these. Lets split this so let's give this 1500 to each of the Tigers and Crows and 2000 neutrals.

53500 to19700.

Lets give 2000 to Government, Dignitaries and Sponsors, which whilst a lot of neutrals, given the Vic Govts running of the show there would be a heavy bias to the local side. Lets 1400 neutrals, 500 Richmond, 100 Adelaide.

54000 to 19700.

Leaving 12,000 Corporate seats

Hard to judge but again a bias to the locals because they're in town any rate. Lets go with 4000 Tigers, 2000 Crows and 6000 neutrals.

58000 tigers, 21700 Crows and the rest neutrals. Whilst educated guesstimates im pretty sure I wouldn't be far off the mark. So in this instance, and pretty much every instance when a WA or SA team plays a Vic MCG Tennant club, that Tennant club supporters will outnumber them 3 to 1. Which my Chimpy friend equals massive home ground advantage.
Check your numbers, you have flagged that the Tigers may have 50% of the MCC reserve but instead of jumping the club members from 17k to 28k you have gone to 38k.

So yeah circa 45-50k Tigers, 25k Crows and 25-30k neutrals (of which plenty would be Tiger rivals like Carl or Coll fans who would be cheering on whoever is playing Richmond).

So much for your 75% of crowd support claim.

A team that barely has 50% crowd support....that isn't what a home advantage crowd sounds like.
 

Kwality

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Hawthorn are an MCG tenant, they get 9 MCG games most years (and yes just 9 in 2022), and they travel 9 times.

Port, WC, Adelaide, Freo get 12 games at their stadiums and only travel 10 times.

Talk about inequality.

Toss in the GF & the plot thickens. You need to review the relevance of home & away in the modern day.
 

doppleganger

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You need to review the relevance of home & away in the modern day.
No.

All sporting competitions use an equal spread of home and away games as part of regular season fixtures.

Many sporting leagues have specific teams that endure larger travel as a result of geography.
 

Demonic Ascent

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It will never happen and here's why.

200,000 MCC members pay $800+ a year (most do anyway) because they know they get a ticket to the GF if they want one.

60,000 AFL Members pay $470/$630 a year because they know they'll have access to finals/GF should their team make it (or the chance to in the future once they become full members).
 
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