Your club's identity

GC2015

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Thread starter #1
I find clubs/fans tend to take on an identity of their community, at least historically. For example, Collingwood has a working class background and the majority of Pies supporters seem to take on that mentality whereas Demons supporters tend to be more upper class. Then it got me thinking about non-Victorian clubs in the league and I found a trend that suggests each city has a working class team and an upper class team.

Adelaide - upper class
Port Adelaide - working class

West Coast - upper class
Fremantle - working class

Sydney - upper class
GWS - working class

Then I got to my own state - Queensland. Now I know Brisbane has a history of association with elitists like Christopher Skase, Reuben Pelerman etc, they have a good relationship with the cricket elitists and are based in a rich area called Coorporaoo so you could very easily argue the Lions would be considered an upper class but now I'm looking at my own club and I'm really unsure of how the Suns would identify.

I suppose the majority of our supporters are probably Victorian retirees who likely have money so maybe the club is a bit more upper class inclined in that sense but as a supporter that frequently attends games I wouldn't say it's obvious which side of the spectrum the Suns sit. Even kids coming out of our academy are both a mix of private school and public school boys so I'm really struggling to work out where my club sits. What do you guys think?
 

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Jade

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#2
I find clubs/fans tend to take on an identity of their community, at least historically. For example, Collingwood has a working class background and the majority of Pies supporters seem to take on that mentality whereas Demons supporters tend to be more upper class. Then it got me thinking about non-Victorian clubs in the league and I found a trend that suggests each city has a working class team and an upper class team.

Adelaide - upper class
Port Adelaide - working class

West Coast - upper class
Fremantle - working class

Sydney - upper class
GWS - working class

Then I got to my own state - Queensland. Now I know Brisbane has a history of association with elitists like Christopher Skase, Reuben Pelerman etc, they have a good relationship with the cricket elitists and are based in a rich area called Coorporaoo so you could very easily argue the Lions would be considered an upper class but now I'm looking at my own club and I'm really unsure of how the Suns would identify.

I suppose the majority of our supporters are probably Victorian retirees who likely have money so maybe the club is a bit more upper class inclined in that sense but as a supporter that frequently attends games I wouldn't say it's obvious which side of the spectrum the Suns sit. Even kids coming out of our academy are both a mix of private school and public school boys so I'm really struggling to work out where my club sits. What do you guys think?
In fairness, and not meant to be an insult, have the Gold Coast existed long enough to have an identity?
 

GC2015

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In fairness, and not meant to be an insult, have the Gold Coast existed long enough to have an identity?
Perhaps this is one of the biggest factors holding my team back. I know it takes time for identities to develop but we don't have geographical influences to speed the process up like GWS do. We also don't have a wealthy backer that instills the expectations of an upper class environment. We just seem to be a mix of all backgrounds.
 

Jade

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#5
Perhaps this is one of the biggest factors holding my team back. I know it takes time for identities to develop but we don't have geographical influences to speed the process up like GWS do. We also don't have a wealthy backer that instills the expectations of an upper class environment. We just seem to be a mix of all backgrounds.
I really don't think that's the difference between GWS and GC.

In my opinion, what GWS did right that GC completely stuffed up was in building a 'club' first and not a football side.

Where GC brought in noted poor leaders such as Ablett and Brown, along with Brennan, Hunt etc, GWS concentrated on bringing in Ward, Davis, McDonald, Power.

Where GWS went for the culture building Sheedy and Williams, GC went untried in McKenna.
 

GC2015

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I really don't think that's the difference between GWS and GC.

In my opinion, what GWS did right that GC completely stuffed up was in building a 'club' first and not a football side.

Where GC brought in noted poor leaders such as Ablett and Brown, along with Brennan, Hunt etc, GWS concentrated on bringing in Ward, Davis, McDonald, Power.

Where GWS went for the culture building Sheedy and Williams, GC went untried in McKenna.
I totally agree that we made recruitment mistakes at the start which made it very difficult to develop a strong culture and I wasn't blaming geographical elements for that. I was simply saying western Sydney is considered more of a working class area and residents are proud of being 'westies' so the Giants are naturally going to attract people of a certain background. Then you look at the Gold Coast where there isn't a clear majority of socioeconomic backgrounds. There are plenty of rich people on the Gold Coast who are interested in AFL and obviously poor people who are also interested in footy.

What I'm saying is it just seems to be a mix without an obvious majority. At least the Gold Coast Titans have the benefit playing a traditionally working class game in rugby league and can rely on that for their majority and can even use that to market the team a certain way.
 

Jade

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#9
I totally agree that we made recruitment mistakes at the start which made it very difficult to develop a strong culture and I wasn't blaming geographical elements for that. I was simply saying western Sydney is considered more of a working class area and residents are proud of being 'westies' so the Giants are naturally going to attract people of a certain background. Then you look at the Gold Coast where there isn't a clear majority of socioeconomic backgrounds. There are plenty of rich people on the Gold Coast who are interested in AFL and obviously poor people who are also interested in footy.

What I'm saying is it just seems to be a mix without an obvious majority. At least the Gold Coast Titans have the benefit playing a traditionally working class game in rugby league and can rely on that for their majority and can even use that to market the team a certain way.
Yeah fair enough.

I suspect a more reliable level of support will come for the Suns if and when they start winning games with some regularity.
 

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GC2015

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Gold Coast has a lot of support from the Southport Sharks who have been quite the hub for footy on the Gold Coast for a long time. That gives the club a bit of heart in my view.

https://southportsharks.com.au/football/gc-suns-patron-partnership/
I know the club has a strong relationship with the Sharks and they are solid financial backers but I'm not so sure the identity translates between the clubs. In local QLD footy Southport are considered the team with the silver spoon in their mouth mainly due to a very rich backer back in their formative days. The club has a long history of winning premierships and genuinely believe they are better than everyone else in Queensland. As much as I'd love that to be the case with the Suns, the scale of operations in the AFL just don't allow for it. I also feel the Suns have purposely distanced themselves from the Sharks (at least publicly) because they don't want to ostracise the local footy fans who don't like Southport. Don't forget, most people in local Queensland footy hate Southport so it would be foolish for the Suns to publicly advertise a close relationship with the Sharks.
 

threesixpio

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#15
I really don't think that's the difference between GWS and GC.

In my opinion, what GWS did right that GC completely stuffed up was in building a 'club' first and not a football side.

Where GC brought in noted poor leaders such as Ablett and Brown, along with Brennan, Hunt etc, GWS concentrated on bringing in Ward, Davis, McDonald, Power.

Where GWS went for the culture building Sheedy and Williams, GC went untried in McKenna.
Spot on post
 

demondavey

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#16
I really don't think that's the difference between GWS and GC.

In my opinion, what GWS did right that GC completely stuffed up was in building a 'club' first and not a football side.

Where GC brought in noted poor leaders such as Ablett and Brown, along with Brennan, Hunt etc, GWS concentrated on bringing in Ward, Davis, McDonald, Power.

Where GWS went for the culture building Sheedy and Williams, GC went untried in McKenna.
Elite post
 

Beer n Skittles

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#17
I find clubs/fans tend to take on an identity of their community, at least historically. For example, Collingwood has a working class background
Would've thought Collingwood are much more strongly associated with the non working class
 

basashi

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#18
West Coast - upper class
Fremantle - working class
I totally agree that this is the image portrayed in the media however:

- Freo majority suburbs are only in and around Freo and the richest suburbs of Cottelsoe, Mosman Park, Nedlands, etc. The suburbs with the lowest % of Freo fans are the poorest suburbs in the SE corridor and around Midland.

The market research you can buy shows that Freo fans are most likely (in the league, not just VS West Coast) to
- have bought a book in the survey period, and
- work in IT
...And Freo fans are second most likely in the league to hold private health insurance (behind Hawthorn Fans). Holding private health insurance is generally considered a wealth indicator.

The above would seem to suggest that things are, at the very least, a little murkier than first thought.

(The most amazing stat for in all that market research data was that, at one point, over 90% of Hawks fans were Liberal voters. Such a one sided result is remarkable.)
 

Ichabod Noodle

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#24
I was simply saying western Sydney is considered more of a working class area and residents are proud of being 'westies'
for the record, I can't stand the term 'westie' and nobody I know uses it outside of sarcasm and irony.

also if you think WS is working class you have no idea about the size or diversity of the region - and the club is doing a great job of tapping into that diversity.
 

General Giant

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#25
Perhaps this is one of the biggest factors holding my team back. I know it takes time for identities to develop but we don't have geographical influences to speed the process up like GWS do.
Isnt the Gold Coast a completely seperate city to Brisbane?
Doesnt that help?

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