Ranking VFL/AFL clubs - which has been the most successful?

Paul P Mark

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Juat imagine this. The South Melbourne Swans relocate to Sydney and become the Sydney Swans with the same colours and essentially the same jumper. How many South Melbourne supporters do you think would still think it's the same club and keep on supporting that club?

Turns out quite a few.

The Swans had over 12,000 Victorian members in 2016.
I reckon the only Sydney Swans supporter to ever have South Melb links is Kenny Williams - and he only stuck with them because he happened to be living in Sydney at the time - but good on him, a true club stalwart.

707549
 
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terrybull

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That is an area for debate - I personally, along with many others, view Sydney as a separate club from Sth Melb. I also view Fitzroy as separate from the Bears/Lions. 'Relocation', in reality, is when one club folds and is replaced by a new one.
Nearly all clubs “relocated”

Richmond : Punt Rd - MCG
St.Kilda : Junction Oval - various grounds
Etc etc

When doing these kind of stats it’s best to base it on AFL official stats and not personal preferences.

South Melbourne - Sydney = same

I think AFL see’s Brisbane Lions from 1997 and Bears and Fitzroy have separate stats. Not sure.
 

terrybull

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Just imagine this - the AFL relocate the West Coast Eagles to Hobart and become known as the Hobart Eagles. How many West Coast supporters do you tgink would still think it's the same club and keep on supporting that club? The answer is probably zero. I'm sorry, but a club's spiritual existence is tied to area where the club was founded.

Just imagine this - the AFL relocate the West Coast Eagles to Hobart and become known as the Hobart Eagles. How many West Coast supporters do you think would still think it's the same club and keep on supporting that club? The answer is probably zero. I'm sorry, but a club's spiritual existence is tied to area where the club was founded. I'm actually not sure the AFL could get the concept of relocation past the public these days. Even the Suns would sooner fold than 'relocate' to Hobart. Hobart Suns...really? Why bother? If it comes to that, Fold the Suns and form the new Hobart club. Relocation, reloschemation.
This basically happen to the Bears. Suddenly their team was wearing very Fitzroy looking jumpers and Fitzroy’s logo...

And what stats would you use if say Port Adelaide Power go broke and Collingwood Magpies Reserves buys their license and relocate to Adelaide and call themselves Port Adelaide Power?

As I stated before, the safest bet is using official stats. All others is fantasy.
 

Roylion

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I reckon the only Sydney Swans supporter to ever have South Melb links is Kenny Williams - and he only stuck with them because he happened to be living in Sydney at the time - but good on him, a true club stalwart.
o_O

You "reckon" do you?

Which bit of "the Swans have 12,000 Victorian members" didn't you understand? The largest of any non-Victorian club and clearly derives from the South Melbourne supporter base. This supporter group clearly regards the Sydney Swans as the continuation of the South Melbourne Football Club, as do the Sydney Swans themselves and the AFL. The Sydney Swans therefore have five premierships from 122 years participation in the competition.
 

PerthBoy86

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So you don’t want to use the ‘suburban comp’ to count premierships but you want to use it to highlight Premiership droughts. Instead of being selective wouldn’t you have said Collingwood have won 2 flags in 29 years.
I'm highlighting how amateur it was. Not that the results count for nothing, but it's obviously irrelevant to any discussion about overall success now. Pies have been more successful in the AFL era than most, no denying that.
 

footyfan78

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So Carlton and Essendon have won the most Premierships with 16 each, followed by Collingwood with 15 and then Hawthorn with 13. So does that mean Carlton and Essendon have been the most successful clubs in VFL/AFL history? Not so fast. You have to take into account that Hawthorn didn't enter the competition until 1925, whereas Essendon, Carlton, and Collingwood are all foundation members since 1897. Those foundation members have had 28 more years to win more Premierships than Hawthorn.

So if we are looking at Premierships as a gauge, we clearly need to look at Premiership strike-rate.
I would say not so fast with that conclusion either.
Premiership strike rate whilst you in the competition indeed shows how well you have done in the time you have competed as a club in the league. No denying that. Hawks have done very well indeed once they develop a stronger club culture to expect to win more often.
But why are we letting Hawks off the hook of not being good enough for 28 years to be even considered part of the premier league? They were in the VFA since 1902 so and took until 1925 to be a club others felt decent enough to compete with them. They existed as a club well before 1925. Then they were essentially upgraded to a better league. The actual reality is they were not a good enough club to be in the this league back then for 28 years. So for me those 28 years count as years as a club without a premiership in this league because they were not even good enough to compete in it then. They not being good enough to be in it, does not give them a free pass of 28 years not counting seasons as a football club. They did not even win VFA flags in that time.
1902 to 2019 they were good enough as a club to win 13 league premierships. That is how I measure them. They ahead of Richmond but still behind the others on the ultimate measure of success which is premierships. I rate them the best performed club from 1961 and beyond. The full extent of the football seasons this league has existed they probably about fourth most successful football club.
 

Carringbush2010

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So Collingwood has the most 'away' wins...

Does this include 'away' wins at its home ground? - Eg Richmond V Collingwood at the MCG?
By that logic you can't count home wins against other tenants of the same ground. So every time we win or lose against Mel, Rich or Hawthorn it's moot.
 

Hawkk

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I would say not so fast with that conclusion either.
Premiership strike rate whilst you in the competition indeed shows how well you have done in the time you have competed as a club in the league. No denying that. Hawks have done very well indeed once they develop a stronger club culture to expect to win more often.
But why are we letting Hawks off the hook of not being good enough for 28 years to be even considered part of the premier league? They were in the VFA since 1902 so and took until 1925 to be a club others felt decent enough to compete with them. They existed as a club well before 1925. Then they were essentially upgraded to a better league. The actual reality is they were not a good enough club to be in the this league back then for 28 years. So for me those 28 years count as years as a club without a premiership in this league because they were not even good enough to compete in it then. They not being good enough to be in it, does not give them a free pass of 28 years not counting seasons as a football club. They did not even win VFA flags in that time.
1902 to 2019 they were good enough as a club to win 13 league premierships. That is how I measure them. They ahead of Richmond but still behind the others on the ultimate measure of success which is premierships. I rate them the best performed club from 1961 and beyond. The full extent of the football seasons this league has existed they probably about fourth most successful football club.
Hawthorn didn’t exist as an entity until 1902 and was a junior club in the EDFL until 1914. They only spent 10 seasons in the VFA before being asked to join (or applying to join) the VFL.

They are the only traditional club that was not in the VFA at the time of the breakaway and fundamentally didn’t exist as a club (in fact they didn’t exist in the VFA when the 1908 breakaway occurred)

So if you are going to be funny about VFA / VFL history that is a critical consideration. I mean, 15 years after the creation of the VFL (which today’s competition was born from) Hawthorn was still a junior club competing in what was probably the 3rd or 4th grade of Victorian football.

Before Hawthorn entered the VFA Essendon had 5 VFL premierships, Fitzroy had 4, and Collingwood and Carlton had 3

Hawthorn as a club was created 45 years after Melbourne and Geelong and 30 years after Carlton, North Melbourne, Essendon, South Melbourne and co

I have no doubt this contributed largely to the struggles Hawthorn had between 1925-57, in fact it’s pretty remarkable that they got entrance in the first place.

Between 1914 and 1924 Hawthorn only made the VFA finals twice, North Melbourne and Footscray by contrast were two of the VFA powerhouses in the post 1896 VFA competition
 
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footyfan78

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Hawthorn didn’t exist as an entity until 1902
Hence 59 seasons as a football club before being good enough to win a premiership.
If they not in league before that, they not important enough obviously.
They do not get a free pass for not being in league before 1925.
Not in my book anyway.
 

Hawkk

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Hence 59 seasons as a football club before being good enough to win a premiership.
If they not in league before that, they not important enough obviously.
They do not get a free pass for not being in league before 1925.
Not in my book anyway.
The point is they weren’t even competing in the VFA until 1914 and they were effectively playing with very different rules.

As a junior club I doubt they would have been paying their players for example. It was fundamentally a different club.

It’s pretty remarkable that in the space of 11 seasons Hawthorn went from a EDFC to a VFA club to a VFL club.

I guess back in those days the inner eastern suburbs had a lot of clout. Ironic that it wasn’t until Hawthorn left for Carlton and then moved to the less affluent outer south / eastern suburbs that they had any success on or off the field

I guess most of the Hawthorn / Kooyong set were probably more into Melbourne or the tennis
 

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footyfan78

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The point is they weren’t even competing in the VFA until 1914 and they were effectively playing with very different rules.
I thought it was 1902 but the point being they existed as a football club in 1902 we all agree on. As it is your club I trust you know the exact season of being in VFA. If it is 1914 that just means that from 1902 to 1913 they were even less significant but kudos to them for upgrading club to different leagues and eventually join this one in 1925. My point for this thread is it took them 59 years as football club to win a premiership in this league. They do not get a free pass for competing in lesser league before that as they still existed as that football club. They are years of not being good enough to win premierships in this league as clearly not even good enough to be in it for that long.
 

Paul P Mark

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o_O

You "reckon" do you?

Which bit of "the Swans have 12,000 Victorian members" didn't you understand? The largest of any non-Victorian club and clearly derives from the South Melbourne supporter base. This supporter group clearly regards the Sydney Swans as the continuation of the South Melbourne Football Club, as do the Sydney Swans themselves and the AFL. The Sydney Swans therefore have five premierships from 122 years participation in the competition.
Bit of tounge-in-cheek there with Kenny Williams being the only one. But the concept of reloacation would make a great future post -one I’m sure would get a good debate going.
 

Paul P Mark

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By that logic you can't count home wins against other tenants of the same ground. So every time we win or lose against Mel, Rich or Hawthorn it's moot.
Don't forget that up until the 90s, Melbourne had a distinct home advantage at the MCG. But Pies probably had bigger one at Vic Park.
 
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footyfan78

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I do not remember ever fearing Melbourne at the G.
Distinct home advantage at the MCG has not been my experience. I been going to football since every season of 1982 and beyond.
They probably win there more in seasons they are a strong side but an actual distinct advantage there, nope.
 

Paul P Mark

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Nearly all clubs “relocated”

Richmond : Punt Rd - MCG
St.Kilda : Junction Oval - various grounds
Etc etc

When doing these kind of stats it’s best to base it on AFL official stats and not personal preferences.

South Melbourne - Sydney = same

I think AFL see’s Brisbane Lions from 1997 and Bears and Fitzroy have separate stats. Not sure.
I think a club changing its name and moving to a different city is a LOT different to just getting a new training base and/or playing at a different venue in the same city.
 

Paul P Mark

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Don't forget that up until the 90s, Melbourne had a distinct home advantage at the MCG. Probably an even bigger one for Pies at at Vic Park.
From 1954 to 1960, the Dees won an incredible 91% of home games. Only lost 5 times in 7 seasons. You would have feared them at the ‘G then I’d say.
 

Guju

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I would say not so fast with that conclusion either.
Premiership strike rate whilst you in the competition indeed shows how well you have done in the time you have competed as a club in the league. No denying that. Hawks have done very well indeed once they develop a stronger club culture to expect to win more often.
But why are we letting Hawks off the hook of not being good enough for 28 years to be even considered part of the premier league? They were in the VFA since 1902 so and took until 1925 to be a club others felt decent enough to compete with them. They existed as a club well before 1925. Then they were essentially upgraded to a better league. The actual reality is they were not a good enough club to be in the this league back then for 28 years. So for me those 28 years count as years as a club without a premiership in this league because they were not even good enough to compete in it then. They not being good enough to be in it, does not give them a free pass of 28 years not counting seasons as a football club. They did not even win VFA flags in that time.
1902 to 2019 they were good enough as a club to win 13 league premierships. That is how I measure them. They ahead of Richmond but still behind the others on the ultimate measure of success which is premierships. I rate them the best performed club from 1961 and beyond. The full extent of the football seasons this league has existed they probably about fourth most successful football club.
By using that logic, you are also saying that interstate clubs with fewer premierships, compared to Victorian clubs, is a fault of their own, because they couldn't break into the VFL/AFL earlier.
 

terrybull

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I think a club changing its name and moving to a different city is a LOT different to just getting a new training base and/or playing at a different venue in the same city.
Yes, but some may think differently.

Which is why one should stick with the official AFL stats to make these kind of post statistics correct.
 

terrybull

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I thought it was 1902 but the point being they existed as a football club in 1902 we all agree on. As it is your club I trust you know the exact season of being in VFA. If it is 1914 that just means that from 1902 to 1913 they were even less significant but kudos to them for upgrading club to different leagues and eventually join this one in 1925. My point for this thread is it took them 59 years as football club to win a premiership in this league. They do not get a free pass for competing in lesser league before that as they still existed as that football club. They are years of not being good enough to win premierships in this league as clearly not even good enough to be in it for that long.
I think talent or not good enough had anything to with. If so then St.Kilda and Carlton would not have been invited in 1897 ahead of Port Melbourne, North Melbourne, Williamstown or Footscray.

And in 1908 I think there were more talented teams in the VFA then University.

The pick of Hawthorn in 1925 over Wiilamstown, Northcote, Brunswick or Port Melbourne is also very dubious.
 

Hawkk

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I think talent or not good enough had anything to with. If so then St.Kilda and Carlton would not have been invited in 1897 ahead of Port Melbourne, North Melbourne, Williamstown or Footscray.

And in 1908 I think there were more talented teams in the VFA then University.

The pick of Hawthorn in 1925 over Wiilamstown, Northcote, Brunswick or Port Melbourne is also very dubious.
Plus Prahran over North Melbourne (despite North having the much stronger VFA record)


It’s pretty clear that the VFL was more interested in off field strength (political clout and expansion along the train lines) then on field strength

In fact Hawthorn’s admission (on the basis of being a representative in the eastern suburbs) was quite similar to GWS over Tasmania in the 2010’s

Back in the 1920’s there were plenty of heartland clubs (Williamstown, Port Melbourne, Brunswick) which probably had stronger grounds for selection.

I think the difference between the competition was quite fluid with the VFL really only getting over riding dominance when Footscray left (who were the VFA powerhouse at the time)

Footscray did defeat Essendon (the b2b VFL premiers) in a famous Championship of Victoria match that some claim was thrown by Essendon.

It’s interesting when you look at the pre war years, Footscray was the only competitive 1925’er and they were a pretty strong club off field (membership and crowds) up until the mid 1960’s

North Melbourne and Hawthorn by comparison really struggled
 
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FrustratedTiger

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That is an area for debate - I personally, along with many others, view Sydney as a separate club from Sth Melb. I also view Fitzroy as separate from the Bears/Lions. 'Relocation', in reality, is when one club folds and is replaced by a new one.
It's really not. History is history. It doesn't change because people don't remember it happening.
 

Back One Out

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it wasn’t until Hawthorn left for Carlton and then moved to the less affluent outer south / eastern suburbs that they had any success on or off the field
Rubbish

Hawthorn won the 1961 and 1971 premierships while playing their home games at Glenferrie Oval

The Hawks played their home games at Princes Park from 1974-1991 (and Waverley from 1992-1999), but the club's day-to-day operations and social club were still based in Hawthorn and the players continued to train at Glenferrie Oval up until the move to Waverley in 2006.

It's staggering you wouldn't know this, but that you could probably recite the exact attendance figures for every game
 
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Tim Evans Beard

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Easily a very biased OP. If finishing ‘second’ is defined as a variable, than finishing ‘second’ last needs also be considered for example.

I think if the OP is serious, than considerations in multi variant analysis models should be the first research area to improve.

I’m happy to be contacted ‘off list’ and point you in the direction of introduction material to help you provide meaning defendable analysis rather than weighting’s based on your own preferences.

Poor work that has taken a considerable amount of time and effort is still poor work.
 
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