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From Paul Amy


Wally from Will...
Wally from Williamstown's picture
Wally from Will...
Wally from Williamstown's picture
vfa's picture

There might be many clubs and leagues that could fall over at all levels afl included with this virus. Box hill, sandringham and possibly Casey looks shaky. I think the 5 vfa clubs will all get through this ok. The vafa clubs should be fine. Very sad and tough time for many. Important thing stay safe.


I understand NAB League Girls competition has been cancelled 


Don't be surprised if VFL,VFLW and NAB League Boys competitions will not be far behind.

vfa's picture

Victoria heading to stage 3 with stage 4 not far away. Could be several weeks in lockdown mode if required which will mean forget about any footy for 2020. Wimbledon next major sporting event to be canned in 2020 with choices postponed to later date but more likely abandoned for year. 


The way the AFL are talking I dont think we will the "VFL" return as it was in the future which could be no bad thing.

If the AFL cut their lists to 35 basically to save money as has been suggested they wont need a second tier comp to supply them with players so maybe the exVFA clubs will need to look for new homes if they survive this crisis..


Was listening to SEN SA this morning, In the SANFL Central Disticts and Port Adelaide Magpies are 2 clubs that have said they are in trouble and may not continue.

vfa's picture

Wonder how many footy clubs Australia wide have played their last game ever ?
Port Adelaide were a super power for many years and Central Districts had an amazing record from 2000 onward for a decade. Don't forget Sturt, Glenelg were two clubs that were really struggling in recent times so I would not think that Port and Central Districts will go under. Obviously some clubs will be hit hard and some leagues will really struggle that includes the almighty AFL who thought they were invincible. Tough times for all sports world wide. Even tougher for some business and people who have lost their jobs.

Wally from Will...
Wally from Williamstown's picture

Coronavirus puts future of VFL and clubs in doubt

With no date set for the return of football and clubs shedding costs to stay alive, what does it mean for the VFL? One administrator wants the AFL to step in and guarantee its future.

Paul Amy, Leader

Subscriber only


March 30, 2020 6:00am

Will Richmond be the last ever VFL premiers? Picture: Michael Klein

Will Richmond be the last ever VFL premiers? Picture: Michael Klein


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The football administrator who famously blew the whistle on the proposed Footscray-Fitzroy merger is now sounding alarm bells about the future of the VFL.

AFL Victoria life member and former Bulldogs chief executive Dennis Galimberti wants the AFL to guarantee the future of the state league and its clubs.

He said the VFL remained an outstanding pathway for young footballers and should be strengthened.

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Galimberti, the secretary of Sandringham, spoke out after the demise last Thursday of Northern Blues after Carlton withdrew from their alignment.

The Blues, established as Preston 138 years ago, said they didn’t have the money to press on as a stand-alone club.

Dennis Galimberti is a life member of the VFL.

Dennis Galimberti is a life member of the VFL.

As the Northern Bullants they had linked with Carlton at the end of 2003.

Two other clubs with alignments, Sandy (St Kilda) and Box Hill Hawks (Hawthorn), are resigned to being without AFL players when the VFL season gets underway.

The start has been pushed back to June but clubs fear it won’t go ahead.




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The closure of the Blues and the need for AFL clubs to rein in costs have stirred up speculation the AFL will go back to running a reserves competition next year, putting uncertainty over the future of stand-alone VFL clubs Port Melbourne, Williamstown, Coburg, Werribee and Frankston, as well as Sandringham, Box Hill and Melbourne-aligned Casey.

 Andy Brownbill

The under-18 competition could link with the VFL. Picture: Andy Brownbill

One VFL club official said there was also the long-talked about prospect of the VFL reverting to an under-21 competition and linking with the NAB League under-18s.

“If I knew how it was going to look I wouldn’t be having so many sleepless nights,’’ he said.

VFL clubs have stood down staff as they cut costs in the absence of memberships, social functions, gate receipts, and food and drink sales.

Reluctant to dip into its cash reserves, Sandringham sent away six full-time employees, including CEO David Cannizzo.

Its Sandy by the Bay function centre has been closed until at least until April 13.

Galimberti said VFL clubs were facing “extreme difficulty’’ and uncertainty.

He said unless there was proper planning by the AFL and the support of the State Government “they may never reopen’’.

Dennis Galimberti and Les Twentyman leave the Supreme Court in 1996 after failing to get an injunction against the Fitzroy Football Club.

Dennis Galimberti and Les Twentyman leave the Supreme Court in 1996 after failing to get an injunction against the Fitzroy Football Club.

“The rich fabric of storeyed clubs will be lost … these are state treasures that have great historical and community significance, and they need to be returned and restored to their competitions,’’ he said.

“It’s very important they be part of any resuming competition.

“If the AFL is going to reduce costs significantly, my fear is they may even do away with a state league competition.

“We need a commitment from them that it will be continuing.’’

Galimberti said junior and community football, the NAB League and the VFL “underpin the development of our game’’ and “produce the players who are ultimately showcased on the AFL arena’’.

 Getty Images

The Northern Blues have closed down after Carlton withdrew from their alignment. Picture: Getty Images

He said the Victorian state league continued to give opportunities to mature-age players and produce draftees.

Galimberti said Sandringham past players and supporters had rallied around the club and were ready to “jump in and help’’ when the time came.

“Some have offered to man the office, others have offered to renew their membership in 2021 in advance,’’ he said.

All sponsors have stood by the club.

Galimberti said he was confident the alignment with St Kilda would continue because it would cost the Saints more to set up their own VFL operation rather than part ways with Sandy.

 Getty Images

Sandringham is one of three remaining AFL-aligned VFL clubs. Picture: Getty Images

It’s believed St Kilda contributes about $200,000 to the alignment each year.

Meanwhile Box Hill Hawks say they are ready to field a “strong’’ stand-alone team this year after Hawthorn withdrew their players over the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement Hawthorn CEO Justin Reeves said the club “intended to return to the alignment bigger and better than ever when possible’’ after a “short break’’ in 2020.

Box Hill Hawks and Hawthorn reserves came together when the VFL was revamped in 2000.

The AFL declined to comment.

VFL teams in 2000: Sandringham, North Ballarat, Carlton VFL, St Kilda VFL, Geelong VFL, Williamstown, Box Hill, Springvale, Werribee, Essendon VFL, Collingwood VFL, Frankston, Port Melbourne, Murray Kangaroos, Coburg-Fitzroy, Northern Bullants, Richmond VFL, Bendigo.

VFL teams in 2020: Richmond, Footscray, Williamstown, Essendon, Werribee, Geelong, Port Melbourne, Box Hill Hawks, Casey Demons, Northern Blues *, Collingwood, Sandringham, North Melbourne, Coburg, Frankston