VIC fans - merge, relocate or relegate?

Which is the least worst option?

  • Merge with another Vic club

    Votes: 22 17.3%
  • Relocate interstate

    Votes: 65 51.2%
  • Drop down to the VFL

    Votes: 40 31.5%

  • Total voters
    127

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Roylion

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Yes it is personal, if compromise if preferable then good for you. What can't be argued is IF any club(s) are merged they are not the same and it IS a concession / compromise.
Yes? And? Where did I say that wasn't the case?

That is admitting a defeat, the idea of competition is to be better than your competition, a merge is a joining of two clubs conceding that the club(s) on it's own is not as good as its competition.
Mergers don't happen just for the hell of it. To merge two sporting clubs is a contentious, emotional and difficult decision for many on both sides. I've seen that personally too.

Best to leave it in my book, going by the opinions on these board I'd imagine the majority would not accept a merger.
Many have never had to seriously consider it, so it's easy to come out with strong idealistic opinions. If I had a dollar for every Fitzroy supporter that said they would never entertain the idea of supporting Brisbane in the AFL, well I'd be retired in the south of France. When reality hits though, many are more pragmatic than they realise and in that I'm speaking from experience.
 

Carringbush2010

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It wasn't luck. It was a lot of hard work. As a Fitzroy shareholder I'm proud to say I personally assisted in Fitzroy's survival and revival between 1997 to the present, but I also know



Accepting change is better than not existing in any form whatsoever. What the change entails depends on whether I support the new entity.



As I said, it’s easy to be idealistic when it’s your club that is not threatened.

Existing in some form, as part of something new) is far better than not existing at all, such as the...

View attachment 1039012

What's not to like? Merger of two neighbouring suburbs.

In Melbourne, colours, emblem and playing out of the MCG.

This is an article published by Ashley Browne in The Age in 1995 on how a Melbourne - Fitzroy merger might have been like.

More than 60,000 fans bathed in the MCG sunshine yesterday as the AFL’s two newest clubs, the Melbourne Lions and the Port Adelaide Steelers, bounced the ball to start the 1996 season and the leagues centenary celebrations.

Despite a sizeable contingent of Port Adelaide fans – every bit as rabid as their counterparts from Collingwood – all eyes were on the Lions and how the players from the old Melbourne and Fitzroy clubs would meld.

That question was answered during a withering nine goal third quarter burst that broke the game open. Melbourne was outstanding.

Neil Balme, the unanimous coach of the new club has put together an outstanding side. Skipper Gary Lyon booted nine goals for the Lions, while David Schwarz showed no ill-effects from last year’s two knee reconstructions, pulling in eight marks from centre-half forward and booting five goals of his own.

But it was the on-ball brigade of that was the most impressive feature of the new side. Vice captain Brad Boyd amassed 34 possessions while shutting Steeler captain Craig Bradley out of the contest.

Boyd was always the class performer of the old Fitzroy midfield, but yesterday he combined superbly with with Andy Lovell and Stephen Tingay to mesmerise the Steelers. Simon Atkins another of the former Lions, gave great drive from the centre after half time.

By contrast it was a miserable homecoming for Andrew Obst, the sole top ten player the Demons were forced to offload under the rules of the merger. Obst has found happiness with Port Adelaide the club from which he was recruited to Melbourne in 1990, but he was thrashed yesterday by Glenn Lovett.

There was much speculation that the side would be dominated by former Demons. But the Fitzroy contigent, particularly full back Simon Hawking who kept Scott Hodges to one goal and Chris Johnson who has already struck an uncanny understanding with Schwarz and Lyon.

Off the field it was a grand day for the Lions. Marketing manager John Birt reported a brisk sale of membership tickets and estimated that the sales were already approaching 15,000, which means the club will not need to under-write its membership sales, as it would have if the Lions had sold 12,720. (20% more than the 10,500 the Demons sold last year).

"The TV campaign the AFL helped finance has captured our supporters attention. They understand that a membership ticket represents good value, particularly when ours are $20 cheaper than any other club's" said Birt who predicted that with 10 MCG home games still to come, the Lions membership could top 20,000. And he speaks from a position of strength, having handled Collingwood’s membership during the heady days following the 1990 premiership.

Club chairman Dyson Hore-Lacy was ecstatic after the match. “This is why we decided to resume those 1994 negotiations with Melbourne, rather than merge with Brisbane like some at the AFL would have preferred, “ he said.

“We’ve just won a huge game at our new home ground the MCG and the atmosphere was better than anything we experienced at the Western Oval and certainly better than watching it on TV from the Gabba.”

And with that he headed off to celebrate at 'Smithy’s', the new social club at the Junction Oval named after the late Norm Smith, who played for and coached both Melbourne and Fitzroy.

It was built for the Lions with a $700,000 handout from the AFL, which was to be used specifically for the creation of a social club."
I would never EVER concede Collingwood merging, because it is no longer Collingwood no matter how much you want to boil it down and dissect it, cannot possibly be the same.

Pretty simple stuff, I know it's blunt but it's a reality. Again, if you're content with a merged club then good for you, but it seems you'd be in the minority.
 

Roylion

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I would never EVER concede Collingwood merging, because it is no longer Collingwood
Good for you. But that is your personal decision, which not everyone has to share

no matter how much you want to boil it down and dissect it, cannot possibly be the same.
Of course it's not the same. Where has it ever been said that it is? Depending on how much of Collingwood is in the new club, you'd have three choices

1. Walk away and find another sport
2. Support another AFL club
3. Support the new club with a significant Collingwood identity (e.g black and white vertical striped jumper and known as the Magpies)

Fitzroy people made those choices in 1996 and beyond.

All I'm telling you in under certain circumstances I would have supported the merged club (IF I considered there was enough Fitzroy identity in the new club). So for example, I probably would have supportred the Melbourne Lions because in 1994, there was enough of the Fitzroy identity going to be preserved.

For example this was going to be the new Melbourne Lions jumper. Same colours as the Fitzroy jumper and the emblem.

Melbourne Lions jumper.png


Far better than ceasing to exist in any form in any competition.

Again, if you're content with a merged club then good for you, but it seems you'd be in the minority.
It is immaterial to my personal decision of whether or not to support a merged club, of whether I'm in the minority or not. I'll make that decision and it will be based on how much the new club's identity appeals to me, not what the majority thinks.
 
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Carringbush2010

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Yes? And? Where did I say that wasn't the case?



Mergers don't happen just for the hell of it. To merge two sporting clubs is a contentious, emotional and difficult decision for many on both sides. I've seen that personally too.



Many have never had to seriously consider it, so it's easy to come out with strong idealistic opinions. If I had a dollar for every Fitzroy supporter that said they would never entertain the idea of supporting Brisbane in the AFL, well I'd be retired in the south of France. When reality hits though, many are more pragmatic than they realise and in that I'm speaking from experience.
You're going into detail to try and justify a merge, again what can't be argued is that a merge is a compromise.

Compromise being the operative word, it's like having to replace your V8 with a 6 because of necessity. If it's necessary then you have weigh up the worth, throughout history of this competition mergers are largely a fail because most view it as unworthy.

I understand your view of 'existing' but for most the worth is not there.
 

Carringbush2010

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Good for you. But that is your personal decision, which not everyone has to share
Good luck finding a majority of supporters of any club favouring a compromise for their club to exist as a something else. Again it's clear that the majority would not.

So it is not only my personal decision, you'd find it's the majority.
 

Roylion

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Good luck finding a majority of supporters of any club favouring a compromise for their club to exist as a something else.
I'm not trying to find a majority of supporters to merge clubs.

I oppose mergers of Victorian clubs. They're unnecessary.

However give them two choices only and see what they'd choose.

a. Cease to exist totally or
b. enter into a merger.

Depending on the conditions of the merger and the extent to which it preserved the identity of the new club, choosing to merge is the lesser of the two evils.

I know that in 1989 most Fitzroy supporters were in favour of the merger with Footscray. I wonder why that was. Footscray supporters of course were not. I wonder why.

Melbourne and Hawthorn in 1996?

North Melbourne and Fitzroy in 1996?

Again it's clear that the majority would not.
Is it? Where does this come from?

So it is not only my personal decision, you'd find it's the majority.
How is that relevant to my decision as to whether to support a merged club or not?
 

Carringbush2010

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I'm not trying to find a majority of supporters to merge clubs.

I oppose mergers.

However give them two choices only and see what they'd choose.

a. Cease to exist totally or
b. enter into a merger.

Depending on the conditions of the merger and the extent to which it preserved the identity of the new club, choosing to merge is the lesser of the two evils.

I know that in 1989 most Fitzroy supporters were in favour of the merger with Footscray. I wonder why that was. Footscray supporters of course were not. I wonder why.



Is it? Where does this come from?



How is that relevant to my decision as to whether to support a merged club or not?
Again, you're going into detail why you would support a merge and therefore justify a merge.

I'm fairly certain, going by the sentiment, not only on these boards but in general public that most would be averse to a compromise.

Better to die on your feet than live on your knees as the saying goes, that seems to be the sentiment.
 

Roylion

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The club would not exist as it was, therefore really existing anyway. If anything it's a compromised existence.
It would continue as part of something. Using the Melbourne Lions as an example of what could have been.

- Fitzroy colours retained
- Fitzroy Lion retained
- Melbourne presence
- Training ground at Brunswick St Oval / Junction Oval
- Club history continues to be commemorated (e.g best and fairest medal, Museum, Hall of Fame, past player functions)
- Name retained "Melbourne-Fitzroy Football Club" (trading as the "Melbourne Lions")

and so on

As opposed to absolutely nothing at all.
 

Roylion

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Again, you're going into detail why you would support a merge and therefore justify a merge.
No. I'm explaining why many would consider a merger of their club to be preferable to their club going out of existance totally. That's not to say I favour mergers. I'd be the first to say mergers aren't very palatable and should be fought / opposed / avoided until there are other alternatives.

I'm fairly certain, going by the sentiment, not only on these boards but in general public that most would be averse to a compromise.
Of course they would be, if it could be at all avoided.

Better to die on your feet than live on your knees as the saying goes, that seems to be the sentiment.
It's easy to be idealistic when your club is under no threat.

I've lived through it. As I said. if I had a dollar for every Fitzroy supporter that said in 1996 they would never entertain the idea of supporting Brisbane in the AFL, well I'd be retired in the south of France. The majority of them now support Brisbane. Some took 5-10 years to make that decision.
 
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Carringbush2010

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It would continue as part of something. Using the Melbourne Lions as an example of what could have been.

- Fitzroy colours retained
- Fitzroy Lion retained
- Melbourne presence
- Training ground at Brunswick St Oval / Junction Oval
- Club history continues to be commemorated (e.g best and fairest medal, Museum, Hall of Fame, past player functions)
- Name retained "Melbourne-Fitzroy Football Club" (trading as the "Melbourne Lions")

and so on

As opposed to absolutely nothing at all.
Still not Fitzroy though is it, that is not up for debate. If you'd content with that than great, I could not be. Seems many would not be content with a merge.
 

Roylion

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Still not Fitzroy though is it, that is not up for debate.
Did I say it was? Have I ever said that it was?

If you'd content with that than great,
Content? I'd much prefer Fitzroy to be in the AFL in its own right.

I could not be.
As I said, that is your personal decision. If it ever happens to Collingwood walk away.

Seems many would not be content with a merge.
Of course they wouldn't. I'm suggesting that many (not all) would prefer that their club exists as part of something, than to not exist in any form at all anywhere. See my comments on what the Melbourne Lions merger was going to be. If Fitzroy had to merge then a scenario like I described above was palatable. Not wanted or preferable, but palatable. To Footscray supporters in 1989 and Hawthorn supporters in 1996 the merger scenario put to them wasn't palatable and was hence opposed vehemently. As it should have been.
 

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Carringbush2010

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No. I'm explaining why many would consider a merger of their club to be preferable to their club going out of existance totally. That's not to say I favour mergers. I'd be the first to say mergers aren't very palatable and should be fought / opposed / avoided until there are other alternatives.



Of course they would be, if it could be at all avoided.



It's easy to be idealistic when your club is under no threat.

I've lived through it. As I said. if I had a dollar for every Fitzroy supporter that said in 1996 they would never entertain the idea of supporting Brisbane in the AFL, well I'd be retired in the south of France. The majority of them now support Brisbane.
And here we are, there has been no mergers in the history of the league of any vic clubs (not that I'm aware of) Not even Fitzroy, they exist as the originally have, just not in this competition. Brisbane is not a merge of Fitzroy and the bears despite popular belief it was.

If it was so readily acceptable among the wider fan base of vic clubs we wouldn't have 10 vic clubs, 4 would probably have merged by now by an accepting market.

And that's what it really comes down to, what the market is willing to accept, seems pretty hard to argue that mergers are readily accepted among that fan base.
 

Kwality

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The decision isn't 'academic' though, and following Pendles purely to watch doesn't not necessitate me or anyone investing as a paying fan / member for what is essentially a compromised club.
Your imagination versus those who have been there .... & still follow the game they love. You want to chuck your toys out of the cot.
 

Carringbush2010

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I'm suggesting that many (not all) would prefer that their club exists as part of something, than to not exist in any form at all anywhere.
This is where we disagree, it's pretty hard to ignore what the vibe is. It really is speculative.

I have repeatedly stated I could not follow Collingwood if it is not Collingwood, whether or not the bulk of Collingwood fans have the same sentiment I don't know but it is highly likely.
 

Carringbush2010

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Your imagination versus those who have been there .... & still follow the game they love. You want to chuck your toys out of the cot.
How do you come to that conclusion?, there are only two clubs that have been in this competition that cease to exist as they were. South Melbourne and University.

Only South Melbourne supporters knows what it's like for their club not to exist as it was in this comp, if I am correct most of those supporters stopped following the club and some the league altogether.

What is so wrong with not following a club that is not the same as it was? Just because my club wouldn't exist as it was doesn't mean I'd stop watching footy, would I support another club? Of course not, would I watch with the same enthusiasm? Of course not, but you can't correlate that with 'throwing the toys out of the cot'
 

Roylion

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And here we are, there has been no mergers in the history of the league of any vic clubs (not that I'm aware of) Not even Fitzroy, they exist as the originally have, just not in this competition.
No they're havent been, even though it has come close in 1986, 1989 and 1996

Brisbane is not a merge of Fitzroy and the bears despite popular belief it was.
As a Fitzroy shareholder I've been saying that for years on these boards.

If it was so readily acceptable among the wider fan base of vic clubs we wouldn't have 10 vic clubs, 4 would probably have merged by now by an accepting market.
Without a doubt the fanbase doesn't want mergers, which is why member based clubs haven't merged.

And that's what it really comes down to, what the market is willing to accept, seems pretty hard to argue that mergers are readily accepted among that fan base.
Where have I said that? I'm not arguing that.
 
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Roylion

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How do you come to that conclusion?, there are only two clubs that have been in this competition that cease to exist as they were. South Melbourne and University.
University still exists. Like Fitzroy, they are now in the VAFA. Last year Fitzroy Football Club played University Blacks for the first time in 105 years at the Brunswick Street Oval. The last time was when both clubs competed against each other in the VFL.

Only South Melbourne supporters knows what it's like for their club not to exist as it was in this comp, if I am correct most of those supporters stopped following the club and some the league altogether.
The Sydney Swans have the highest Melbourne based membership and supporter group of any non-Victorian club in the AFL competition. In September 2016, The Age reported that there were more than 12,000 paid up Melbourne based members out of the clubs reported total of 56,000. Tony Morwood, the Victorian manager said 'it comes back to our history. There are generations of families who have stuck to the red and white colours."
 
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Demonic Ascent

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So the Hawks aren't big enough to stand on their own? They sell 4 games a year interstate. The Tigers sold games interstate.

Clubs move games interstate for a variety of reasons, mostly to compensate for the poor fixtures they get but it doesn't mean they cannot stand on their own without it. Melbourne were playing two games in the NT up until 2020, now we will only be playing one game a year there - does that mean we can now stand on one leg? Not every club has the luxury of being a disaster on-field for two decades while still getting commercially lucrative fixtures every year.
 

Roylion

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I have repeatedly stated I could not follow Collingwood if it is not Collingwood, whether or not the bulk of Collingwood fans have the same sentiment I don't know but it is highly likely.
Of course it is highly likely. But it's easy to say that when your club has no chance of merging with another club.
 

Howard Littlejohn

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Define "folding".

If there's a choice between going out of existance completely and merging that preserves the identity of the parent clubs to some degree then I would prefer merging.

I would have supported the following mergers for Fitzroy

View attachment 1038943

Or the Footscray Lions playing out of the Western Oval in this jumper (perhaps with white horizontal stripes)

View attachment 1038947
Merging puts two clubs out of existence, IMO. At least with a straight folding the memories are untarnished.

I can remember Sandy Bay fondly, but despise the existence of South Launceston (not as much as North Launceston or Glenorchy admittedly).
 

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