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Melbourne Football Club, nicknamed The Demons, are an Australian rules football club playing in the Australian Football League (AFL), reigning from Melbourne, Victoria. In 1859,[2] a few days after it was founded, some of its members created the code of football that it still plays. In 1862 it competed in what may be the earliest challenge trophy competition, was a foundation member of the Victorian Football Association (VFA) (1877), one of two associations and governing bodies formed in the same year and in 1897 it became a foundation member of the Victorian Football League (VFL) competition which later became the national Australian Football League (AFL).

  • * Record Attendance: 99,346 in round 10 1958
  • * Most Games: 272 by Robert Flower from 1973 to 1987
  • * Biggest finals crowd: 115,802 for the 1956 grand final at the MCG
Full Ladder Team P W L D FOR AGNST % PTS
11 Melbourne 22 10 12 0 1944 1991 97.6 40

Son of Shaun set to debut

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Debutant: Joel Smith Joel Smith to make his debut against St Kilda

ROOKIE Joel Smith has been promoted to the senior list and will make his AFL debut against St Kilda at Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

The club elevated the 21-year-old defender on Thursday afternoon. He gained his opportunity after ruckman Mitch King was recently placed on the long-term injury list.

Smith said it was “surreal” to be told by coach Simon Goodwin in the office of welfare manager Shannon Byrnes after training on Thursday.  

“It’s a bit of a shock and I didn’t expect it,” he told Melbourne TV.

“A year ago, I was playing in the VFL Development [League] and here I am now playing round one against St Kilda and I’m rapt.

“All of the hard work has paid off and I just can’t wait to be out there.”

The announcement of his first AFL match is another fascinating part of Smith’s football story – and how he came to the...

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Read more: Son of Shaun set to debut

Bring on Saturday, says Viney

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Match preview: Jack Viney Jack Viney speaks to Melbourne TV in the lead up to the round one clash with St Kilda

WHO will do the coin toss? And the pre-match speech?

According to new co-captain Jack Viney, who joins Nathan Jones in the position, they will alternate duties throughout the season.

But just who does which role for Saturday’s season opener against St Kilda at Etihad Stadium remains to be seen.

“I think I’m one from two in the coin toss [during the JLT Community Series], but I’ll have a chat to Chunk (Jones) and work out who wants to do the toss and who wants to do the pre-match speech,” Viney told Melbourne TV.

Viney said it could come down to a ‘rock, papers, scissors’ scenario.

“Something like that – we’ll have to work out something,” he said with a grin.

“Once we work out who’s doing it first, we’ll rotate it throughout the year – it’ll be a pretty simple...

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Read more: Bring on Saturday, says Viney

Eight sidelined for start of season

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Injury update: David Misson David Misson goes through the injury list in the lead up to the opening round of the 2017 season


At least eight listed players will miss the start of season

MELBOURNE will enter the 2017 home and away season with at least eight players on the sidelines, including recruit Michael Hibberd, utility Aaron vandenBerg, defender Josh Wagner and speedster Jay Kennedy-Harris.

Elite performance manager Dave Misson said Hibberd (Achilles – 2-3 weeks), vandenBerg (heel – 4-6 weeks), Wagner (fibula – 2-3 weeks) and Kennedy-Harris (arm – 2-3 weeks) were all in varying stages of their rehabilitation.   

“Hibbo settled really well over the weekend and he ran well today (Tuesday), but because he’s been a little bit up and down, he’s probably a couple of weeks away,” he told Melbourne TV.

“Vanders has that heel stress fracture and it’s been a little bit slow, so he’s...

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Read more: Eight sidelined for start of season

Several in mix for round one

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MELBOURNE coach Simon Goodwin has refused to guarantee Jack Watts' spot in the team for the club's round one clash with St Kilda at Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

Watts was overlooked for the Demons' first two JLT Community Series games after displaying poor training standards over pre-season before he returned for the final match against West Coast.

The skilful forward pressed his claims for selection with two goals from 17 disposals, as well as taking five marks in a VFL practice match for the Casey Demons at the weekend.

"We've got some selection things we've got to go through later in the week and Wattsy's in the mix, as is Dean Kent, Jeff Garlett and Joel Smith," Goodwin said at his press conference on Tuesday.

"That's something we'll discuss pretty heavily at match committee, getting the balance right between the tall forward line and a slightly smaller one.

"He (Watts) is slowly...

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Read more: Several in mix for round one
Tags: mix

St Kilda hoodoo not relevant: Goodwin

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COACH Simon Goodwin says Melbourne’s poor recent record against St Kilda is “irrelevant” heading into its season opener at Etihad Stadium on Saturday.

Speaking at AAMI Park on Tuesday, Goodwin said the fact Melbourne had not defeated St Kilda since the second elimination final in 2006 counted for little entering 2017.

“I think it’s irrelevant really. This is a new group that wants to create its own journey,” he said.

“If people think that we’re thinking about the track record and history against St Kilda, then they’re wrong.

“This playing group is really focused on creating their own journey and their own pathway forward.”

But Goodwin acknowledged that St Kilda would be great challenge first up.

‘’I think it’s exciting for both clubs. It’s two teams that are emerging and are having really good summers. We’re looking forward to it and it’s been something we’ve been looking to for a...

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Read more: St Kilda hoodoo not relevant: Goodwin

Berry named round seven rising star

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GREATER Western Sydney's No.1 draft pick Nicola Barr and Melbourne forward Deanna Berry are the final nominees for the NAB AFL Women's Rising Star award.

Speedy midfielder Barr had 12 disposals, three marks and three tackles in the Giants’ loss to the Western Bulldogs in Canberra on Saturday night.

She was drafted from Sydney University despite having played footy for only three years.

An elite junior in soccer, Barr started playing football at school and stuck with it, finding she enjoyed the combination of elements from different sports.

The 20-year-old is already the recipient of a rising star award, taking out AFL Sydney's equivalent award in 2015. She followed that up with the 2016 Mostyn Medal as the league's best and fairest player.

Berry was highly influential up forward for the Demons in their 54-point win over Fremantle, finishing with 11 disposals, two goals and three...

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Read more: Berry named round seven rising star

A missed opportunity, says Lee

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MELBOURNE women’s football operations manager Debbie Lee says the club’s brush with playing in the inaugural NAB AFL Women’s Grand Final was “a missed opportunity”.

The red and blue looked set to take on the Brisbane Lions in this weekend’s AFLW Grand Final, after Collingwood led Adelaide by seven points at three quarter-time in Sunday’s clash at Olympic Park Oval.

But the Crows stormed home in the final term to win by 24 points and book a spot in the AFLW Grand Final.

Had Collingwood won, Adelaide would’ve finished third. Instead, the Crows claimed second position on percentage to deny Melbourne a place in the Grand Final.

Although it was still a fine first season by Melbourne, it was still a “bitterly disappointing” way to finish, said Lee.   

“Ultimately, it’s disappointing, as we thought we would’ve had a really good opportunity and been really competitive this weekend, but it...

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Read more: A missed opportunity, says Lee

Perspective helps Jake reignite career

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JAKE Melksham says the birth of his daughter Frankie in January 2016 put football – and his 12-month suspension – into perspective.

Speaking on Melbourne TV series AHG Road to Round 1, Melksham said being able to devote his time to Frankie, during her first year, was something he didn’t take for granted.  

“You treat footy as if it’s the be all and end all, when it’s not,” he said.   

“[When] you grow older, you get mature and you become more wiser and there are other things to life.

“That doesn’t mean that you’re not passionate about footy – and it’s not important to me – but when you have a family, you have to grow up pretty fast and that’s what’s happened.”

Melksham, who crossed from Essendon to Melbourne in October 2015, said he was “as fit as I’d ever been”, before he was suspended for 12 months in January 2016.

“We went on camps and we trained really hard and I put in a lot of...

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Read more: Perspective helps Jake reignite career

Garland to miss 2017 season

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COLIN Garland will miss the 2017 season after it was confirmed that he had ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament.

Garland, 28, suffered the knee injury while playing for Casey Demons against Port Melbourne at Casey Fields on Sunday. It happened in the final quarter.

General manager of football operations Josh Mahoney said Garland would be sidelined this year.

“Unfortunately, scans have confirmed that Col has ruptured his ACL,” he told melbournefc.com.au.

“He will meet with a surgeon to discuss his options today (Monday) with the most likely option being that he will miss the year.

“After a disappointing season, last year, Col had completed a very good pre-season and set himself up for a good season.

Garland has played 141 matches for Melbourne since 2007.

Originally from North Hobart/Tasmania U18/Tasmania (VFL), Garland was drafted at No.46 in the 2006 NAB AFL Draft.


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Read more: Garland to miss 2017 season

Round one match day information

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Round 1
St Kilda v Melbourne
Etihad Stadium
Saturday 25 March, 4.35pm

Ticket windows open at 2.45pm with gates to follow at 3pm.

As this game is an away game, only members holding home and away memberships can use their card to gain access to the game.

Alternatively, you can pre-purchase your tickets through Ticketmaster.

The membership booth will be located at the AFL Club Hub outside Gate 5 and will be open from 2.30pm. Membership sales, game day enquiries and scarf collection will be available at the booth.

To find out which membership is best for you, visit our membership website.

The Demon Shop will be set up inside Gate 4 and outside of Gate 5 from 2.30pm. Gate 4 will remain open all game, while Gate 5 will close at quarter time. All 2017 members will receive 10% off full priced merchandise on presentation of their membership card.


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Read more: Round one match day information

Garland likely to miss season

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MELBOURNE has suffered a huge blow on the eve of the season, with defender Colin Garland in danger of missing the year with a serious knee injury.

The 28-year-old suffered a suspected torn anterior cruciate ligament while playing for Casey Demons in a VFL practice game against Port Melbourne at Casey Fields on Sunday.

Garland was involved in a marking contest in the last quarter when he landed awkwardly and had to be stretchered from the ground.

He will have scans on Monday, but the club believes he has ruptured his ACL.

Garland has played 141 games for the Demons, but made only six appearances last year with the emergence of Oscar McDonald.

He was in line for a recall to the senior side for Saturday's round one clash with St Kilda at Etihad Stadium.

The Demons are already stretched defensively with Michael Hibberd (Achilles) and Sam Frost (toe) to miss the season opener, and...

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Hogan back on track after tough 2016

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MELBOURNE star Jesse Hogan has opened up on the struggles that led him to consider moving home to Western Australia. 

Speaking to Channel Nine on Thursday night, Hogan was adamant the decision on his future took its toll on his 2016 season.

“I was struggling a bit,” Hogan said. 

“It (the idea of moving home) became a bit bigger and a bit more… not realistic but… it became an easier option when it was getting a bit hard.

“I was getting a bit down on myself, and you start reading stuff… it gets frustrating.

“The hardest thing is that initial three to four weeks of playing a bit of bad footy, and then a few things back home.

“All of a sudden it started snowballing, and I showed it on the field; I had a pretty poor end to the year… I couldn’t quite get to the bottom of why that was.

“Now, looking back on it, it was a balance of everything, and probably my head space wasn’t there.”


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Read more: Hogan back on track after tough 2016

Melbourne produces record performance

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MELBOURNE has produced a record-breaking performance to stay in the premiership hunt in the NAB AFL Women's competition.

The slick-moving Demons whipped Fremantle by 54 points at Casey Fields in Cranbourne in a dominant display for their last home-and-away game.

The 11.4 (70) was the highest score in the AFLW's inaugural season and the greatest winning margin as well to give Melbourne a chance to be the Brisbane Lions' Grand Final foe next Saturday.

Now Demons coach Mick Stinear and his players can only sit and wait for the outcome of Sunday's Collingwood-Adelaide game at Olympic Park Oval, with the Crows' superior percentage possibly the crucial difference.

Not only was Melbourne able to score almost at will on Saturday, its backline held the hapless Dockers goalless for the last three quarters.

Fremantle was always going to miss the on-ball expertise of injured skipper Kara...

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Read more: Melbourne produces record performance

Hibberd to miss round one

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DEFENDER Michael Hibberd will miss the opening round against St Kilda at Etihad Stadium due to an Achilles injury.

General manager of football operations Josh Mahoney told melbournefc.com.au on Friday evening that the recruit would not be risked for Melbourne’s first clash of the home and away season.

“Michael will not be playing for Casey this weekend. While his Achilles injury is improving, we have decided to take a more cautious approach and he will therefore not be playing in round one,” he said.

“We think this is the best way to approach this type of injury, when we consider the entire season and not just round one.

“We didn’t think it was appropriate to push him for round one, when it’s about having him for the whole season.”

Meanwhile, Mahoney confirmed Melbourne had gained approval from the AFL to play 17 players in a VFL practice match this weekend.

“Those players will play for...

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Read more: Hibberd to miss round one
Tags: hibberd

What the journos think about Melbourne?

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Matt Burgan catches up with a range of journalists covering the game to get their views on Melbourne’s fortunes for 2017 …


Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? I reckon sixth to eighth

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? Christian Salem

Who will win in round one: Melbourne or St Kilda? Melbourne by four points.

How many wins will Melbourne have this season? 13

Who will win Melbourne’s best and fairest award, the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy? Jack Viney


Where will Melbourne finish in 2017? You’ll be pleased to know that I’ve got Melbourne finishing sixth.

Which Melbourne player is the one to watch this year? I’m a massive fan of Jayden Hunt. I love watching him run down the half-back flank. He reminds me a lot of Andrew Obst, back in the day. Am I showing my age? He’s got the same number and hair!

Who will...

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Read more: What the journos think about Melbourne?

Jones welcomes new era

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MELBOURNE co-captain Nathan Jones is determined to be an integral part of the Demons in the foreseeable future as expectations rise that the club is on the verge of a successful era.

Having not being part of finals action since 2006, the 28-year-old has been starved, playing just two finals in 223 games.

During that lean era he has been club captain for four seasons and won three best and fairest awards and he intends to maintain his high standards as the promise of success beckons.

"I haven't waited out all these rough times to not be here for the good times," Jones told AFL.com.au

"Hopefully we continue to rise as a footy club and I remain an integral part of that." 

Jones knows a rise up the ladder won't just happen but he is comfortable with the level of expectation surrounding the Demons. 

"[We are] making sure we continue to remain focused on the things that make us a good...

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Read more: Jones welcomes new era

Patterson set to return

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MELBOURNE has included Brooke Patterson for Saturday’s final NAB AFL Women’s home and away match against Fremantle at Casey Fields.

Patterson, who missed Melbourne’s last two matches with a hamstring injury, will start on the interchange bench alongside Emma Humphries, Maddie Boyd, Aliesha Newman, Ainslie Kemp and Deanna Berry.

Pepa Randall, who has yet to debut this season due to injury, has been named as an emergency alongside Jessica Anderson.

Stephanie De Bortoli and Meg Downie remain sidelined.

A win on Saturday will keep Melbourne in contention for the inaugural NAB AFL Women’s Grand Final the following week against the Brisbane Lions, pending the outcome of Sunday’s Collingwood and Adelaide clash at Olympic Park Oval.

Saturday’s match kicks off at 4.35pm AEDT and will be broadcast live nationally on Fox Footy from 4.30pm.

Melbourne AFLW team: round seven

Backs: Jasmine Grierson,...

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Read more: Patterson set to return

McDonald around mark for top defenders

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TOM McDonald says he rates Richmond’s Alex Rance as the best key backman in the competition, but hopes he is around the mark as the top tall defenders in the game.

Speaking on 1116 SEN, McDonald listed a handful of key defenders as the best in the business.  

“I think Rancey is No.1,” he said.

“[Adelaide’s Daniel] Talia is probably up there as well, but he’s not as offensive as Rance, but in terms of his defensive stuff, I reckon [North Melbourne’s] Robbie Tarrant would be around the mark as well after last year.

“I think I’m around the mark, but maybe not in front of them, but my favourite player in the league is actually [West Coast’s] Jeremy McGovern, so I like what he does.”

Meanwhile, McDonald said he expected younger brother Oscar to keep making strong inroads in 2017, after showing promise last year.

“He didn’t set the world on fire in the AFL for a little while, which is hard...

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Read more: McDonald around mark for top defenders

AFL captains have their say on 2017

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The AFL has conducted its annual poll of the 18 club captains on the eve of the season and they see St Kilda ahead of Melbourne as the best emerging team hoping to force its way into finals action for the 2017 Toyota AFL Premiership Season.

As per recent seasons, the club captains were confidentially polled on five key questions on the season ahead and 11 captains saw the Saints playing finals this year, compared to six captains plumping for Melbourne. The Sydney Swans were the only unanimous choice of every other club to reach the finals while the GWS Giants are viewed as the clear team to beat for the premiership.

The captains were asked which seven other teams, apart from their own, could make the finals and which other club, apart from their own, could make the grand final.

A total of 11 different clubs were considered possible chances to contest the finals and four different clubs...

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Read more: AFL captains have their say on 2017

Salem named as multicultural ambassador

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THE AFL and Australia Post are pleased to announce the 2017 Australia Post AFL Multicultural Player Ambassadors which will include 19 AFL and AFLW players.

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan said the ambassadors played an important role in promoting diversity and inclusion within Australian Football and the broader community.

“The Ambassadors represent 12 AFL Clubs, four AFLW Clubs, and a wide range of diverse communities throughout Australia,” Mr McLachlan said.

“They will play a crucial role in increasing cultural awareness, promoting inclusion and encouraging participation at all levels of Australian Football.

“We have increased the number of female ambassadors from two to four in 2017, which reflects the growing prominence of NAB AFL Women’s and the commitment we have made to build the foundations of women’s football.

“It’s a historic year in our game. In addition to the launch of AFLW, we are...

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Read more: Salem named as multicultural ambassador

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