- Feb 23, 2009
- AFL Club
- Other Teams
- New York Jets
Pretty reasonable thought.Essendon's planned upgrade to Windy Hill uses the same model as the Dogs and North have used/are using to get the Western Oval and Arden Street upgraded.
Leverage community links/access and the AFLW team for a major injection of taxpayer funds.
Which begs the question as to what real competitive advantage big rich clubs have over the smaller clubs now.
The days of Essendon/West Coast/Hawthorn being able to afford world class training facilities while smaller clubs had portables or used uni gyms and the like are long gone.
The footy department soft cap brought the heat out of the arms race there and the AFL used COVID spending cuts to cement in the equalisation.
It looks like the real competitive advantages are with clubs that can offer lifestyle and cultural benefits.
Geelong benefits massively from its location and the associated lifestyle. Brisbane has done very well in building a culture that players want to come to and/or not leave. GWS have rapidly built a strong culture that allows them to keep players they want and attract talent too.
Has footy's equalisation mechanism - and associated political/cultural factors like teams working out they can use W to squeeze taxpayers for cash - finally reached its goal where richer clubs don't actually get any tangible onfield advantage from their cash?
These days all AFL clubs have elite player well-being programs and access to facilities.
Soft caps and COVID reductions in spending also reduce any advantage.
Not to mention, the AFL distrubutes funds based on where they are needed, so there's no real advantage there.
Maybe they offer more security for roles for staff and to sell to their members/ member benefits?
I dont think there is any tangible on field benefit any more.