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About VFL

Formed in October 1896, the Victorian Football League (VFL) is one of the oldest sporting leagues in the world rich in history and passion based on a love of Australian football.

In 1896, eight leading clubs in Victoria - Melbourne, Essendon, Geelong, Collingwood, South Melbourne, Fitzroy, Carlton and St Kilda came together to form the VFL. Winter in Melbourne was dominated by football and the game had developed from a suburban game into a structured league with a legion of fans and supporters.

The VFL changed its name to the AFL in 1990, and further expansion followed in 1991 (Adelaide Crows), 1995 (Fremantle) and 1997 (Port Adelaide), coupled with a 1996 merger between the Brisbane Bears and Fitzroy, giving the competition two teams in each of WA and SA, and one team apiece in Qld and NSW.

The VFL returned to a Victorian reserves competition for the best state league footballers across Victoria. Teams included Victorian AFL reserves teams plus long-standing clubs like Port Melbourne, Williamstown and Frankston.

In 2021, a new era for the VFL began, with teams from the NEAFL joining an expanded competition.

Since 2022, the VFL competition has featured 21 teams from Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. They include:

VFL standalone clubs: Coburg, Frankston, Northern Bullants, Port Melbourne, Southport Sharks, Werribee and Williamstown

AFL aligned clubs: Box Hill Hawks, Casey Demons and Sandringham

AFL standalone clubs: Brisbane Lions, Carlton, Collingwood, Essendon, Footscray Bulldogs, Geelong Cats, Gold Coast SUNS, GWS GIANTS, North Melbourne, Richmond and Sydney Swans


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