Etihad Stadium hosts a range of sports and is proud to be home to five AFL clubs Essendon, Carlton, North Melbourne, St Kilda and the Western Bulldogs, as well as A-League team Melbourne Victory and Big Bash League side the Melbourne Renegades.
Essendon was the first AFL club to announce it would play home games at the venue now known as Etihad Stadium. The anchor tenant, coached by Kevin Sheedy, won the first AFL Premiership match at the stadium on March 9, 2000, beating Port Adelaide by 94 points. Its champion mid fielder, Michael Long, kicked the first goal at the stadium. Led on the field by James Hird, the club lost just one match for the season and went on to win the 2000 Premiership in a record breaking season. Essendon, alongside Carlton, is the game’s most successful club with 16 Premierships to its name.
Coach: John Worsfold
Captain: Jobe Watson
Premierships: (16) 1897, 1901, 1911, 1912, 1923, 1924, 1942, 1946, 1949, 1950, 1962, 1965, 1984, 1985, 1993, 2000
Brownlow Medallists: Dick Reynolds 1934, 37-38, Bill Hutchison 1952 (tied), 1953, Graham Moss 1976, Gavin Wanganeen 1993, James Hird 1996 (tied), Jobe Watson 2012.
300 game players: Simon Madden 378, Dick Reynolds 320, Tim Watson 307, Garry Foulds 300, Dustin Fletcher.
Norm Smith Medallists: Bill Duckworth 1984, Simon Madden 1985, Michael Long 1993, James Hird 2000
AFL Hall of Fame Legends: John Coleman, Bill Hutchison, Dick Reynolds
With 16 premierships to its credit, Carlton has historically been considered one of the game’s powerhouse clubs. Recently appointed coach Brendon Bolton is ushering the club into a new era with exciting times ahead.
Coach: Brendon Bolton
Captain: Marc Murphy
Premierships: (16) 1906, 1907, 1908, 1914, 1915, 1938, 1945, 1947, 1968, 1970, 1972, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1987, 1995
Brownlow Medallists: Bert Deacon 1947, John James 1961, Gordon Collis 1964, Greg Williams 1994, Chris Judd 2010
300 game players: Craig Bradley 375, Bruce Doull 365, John Nicholls 328, Stephen Silvagni 312, Justin Madden (Carlton/Essendon) 332
Norm Smith Medallists: Wayne Harmes 1979, Bruce Doull 1981, David Rhys-Jones 1987, Greg Williams 1995
AFL Hall of Fame Legends: Ron Barassi (Melbourne/Carlton/North Melbourne and Sydney Swans), John Nicholls, Alex Jesaulenko (Carlton/St Kilda).
St Kilda moved its home games to the venue in 2000. While failing by the narrowest of margins in recent years to add to its 1966 Premiership win, St Kilda has enjoyed great success at Etihad Stadium. In 2009 the Saints enjoyed a record breaking season, winning 20 of 22 matches, including 13 wins at Etihad Stadium. St Kilda also set a new AFL attendance record for Etihad Stadium in Round 14 2009, attracting 54,444 fans to a showdown against Geelong. Lenny Hayes holds the record for most games played at the venue and its champion captain Nick Riewoldt is Etihad Stadium’s leading goal kicker.
Coach: Alan Richardson
Captain: Nick Riewoldt
Premierships: (1) 1966
Brownlow Medallists: Colin Watson 1925, Brian Gleeson 1957, Neil Roberts 1958, Ian Stewart 1965-66, Ross Smith 1967, Tony Lockett (tied) 1987, Robert Harvey 1997-98.
300 game players: Robert Harvey 383, Nathan Burke 323, Stewart Loewe 321, Barry Breen 300
Norm Smith Medallists: Lenny Hayes 2010 (Grand Final 1)
AFL Hall of Fame Legends: Darrel Baldock, Roy Cazaly (St Kilda/South Melbourne), Ian Stewart (St Kilda/Richmond)
North Melbourne became a tenant at Etihad Stadium in 2000. The Kangaroos have been a part of some significant moments at the stadium, none more poignant than Jason McCartney’s return to AFL ranks on June 6 2003, after suffering horrific burns as a result of the Bali Bombings. The Kangaroos under the leadership of Denis Pagan and Wayne Carey were a powerhouse during the 1990s and are once again striving to head to the top of the AFL ladder.
Coach: Brad Scott
Captain: Andrew Swallow
Premierships: (4) 1975, 1977, 1996, 1999
Brownlow Medallists: Noel Teasdale (tied) 1965, Keith Greig 1973, 1974, Malcolm Blight 1978, Ross Glendinning 1983
300 game players: Glenn Archer 311, Wayne Schimmelbusch 306, Brent Harvey 374+
Norm Smith Medallists: Glenn Archer 1996, Shannon Grant 1999
AFL Hall of Fame Legends: Barry Cable
The Western Bulldogs have enjoyed some great success at Etihad Stadium since electing to play its home games at the venue in 2000. While failing to reach a Grand Final since 1961, the Bulldogs had three near misses in Preliminary Finals between 2008-10, causing heart break for its loyal band of supporters. Former captain and club champion, Brad Johnson once said he loved nothing more than playing under the roof of Etihad Stadium. “When the roof’s shut the atmosphere is amazing and it is where I have played some of my best football,” the former skipper said. Johnson played his 300th career match at the stadium in 2008. In 2009 Johnson became the first AFL player to play 100 matches at Etihad Stadium.
Coach: Luke Beveridge
Captain: Bob Murphy
Premierships: (1) 1954
Brownlow Medallists: Allan Hopkins (tied) 1930, Norm Ware 1931, Peter Box 1956, John Schultz 1960, Gary Dempsey 1975, Kelvin Templeton 1980, Brad Hardie 1985, Tony Liberatore 1990, Scott Wynd 1992, Adam Cooney 2008
300 game players: Brad Johnson 349, Chris Grant 341, Doug Hawkins 329, Scott West 324, Ted Whitten snr 321
Norm Smith Medallists: –
AFL Hall of Fame Legends: Ted Whitten
Considered one of the most successful clubs in the A-League on and off the pitch, Melbourne Victory has one of the biggest supporter bases, regularly attracting more than 40,000 fans to its games at Etihad Stadium. Founded in 2004, Victory was one of the original A-League clubs. On February 18, 2007, Melbourne Victory claimed the championship with a stunning 6-0 victory over Adelaide United. A venue attendance record was also set with the final attracting 55,436 fans.
Coach: Kevin Muscat
Captain: Carl Valeri
A-League Premierships: (3) 2006/07, 2008/09, 2014/15
A-League Finals: Champions (3) 2007, 2009, 2015
Johnny Warren Medallists: Carlos Hernandes (2009/10), Marco Rojas (2012/13)
Joe Marston Medallists: Archie Thompson (2007), Tom Pondeljak (2009), Mark Milligan (2015)
The Melbourne Renegades is Etihad Stadium’s Big Bash League tenant club. Established in 2011, the Renegades have developed into one of the league’s most competitive teams. In 2014, the Melbourne derby between the Renegades and their cross town rival, the Melbourne Stars, attracted a venue record breaking attendance of 42,837 fans.
Coach: Simon Helmot
Captain: Aaron Finch
Minor Premiers: (1) 2012/13