These are a few of my favourite things (or That’s what I like about football)

I wrote a piece last week that asked for the AFL to delve deeper into matters that I thought (with tongue firmly planted in cheek) had bought the game into disrepute.

What followed was a huge amount of comment, mostly people wishing to add to the things that they were uncomfortable about in modern football, as well as some pearlers about things we probably wish to forget the game has inflicted upon us.

In the midst of what was a fantastic discussion, and another example of why the Almanac is such as great location for these views and a font of incredible football wit and knowledge, it made me ponder what we did like about football.

Many comments craved the past and a return to old fashioned footy, a lack of corporate influence and terminology and removing inane commentators. Logic would tell you that the things we like about football were the opposite of what we were pointing out had bought the game down.

So with that, in contrast to what may have bought the game into disrepute, here’s my starting list of what in the modern game is great, should be treasured and has bought the game into…repute (?)

Nathan Grima’s goal and celebration

Reclink’s matches for people down on their luck and the annual Community Cup game


Jeremy Cameron

The walk to the G through Yarra Park

The Tigers playing finals

Jaegar O’Meara

Emma Quayle

Seeing couples and groups walking to the game together wearing opposing scarves

Collingwood and Essendon on Anzac Day

Simon Black

The statues outside the MCG

People defying ground catering prices and bringing in hot dog frankfurts in a thermos


Bob Murphy’s columns in The Age

A Saturday afternoon game at the G between two Melbourne based sides on a clear yet cold August day

Tiwi Island and top-end football

Orren Stephenson’s path to the AFL

Hearing a country footy side sing their song after a win, normally substituting their town for the AFL club they have borrowed the song from

Channel 10’s Before the Game

Michael Barlow’s comeback (hope Gary Rohan does as well)

Stevie J

Bachar Houli and his community work outside football

The Couldabeens

That there’s still a role for angry little villans like King and Ballantyne

The smell of the dressing room at a suburban footy ground

Jeremy Howe and the return of the speccy

About Sean Curtain

"He was born with a gift of laughter, and a sense that the world was mad". First line of 'Scaramouche' by Sabatini, always liked that.


  1. The toe poke
    Stevie J
    running into open space
    Gary Malarkey V Michael Roach in 1980
    Phil Manassa’s 1977 GF sprint up the wing (and goal)
    the football itself
    Jack Dyer

  2. Phillip Dimitriadis says

    Great stuff Sean

    agree with Dips re: Manassa and Stevie J

    Andrew Krakouer’s 2011 season
    Greater focus on multicultural players and encouraging young girls to play the game.
    Adam Goodes
    Litza’s rants.

  3. Amen to all the above. I’d like to add;

    Honking the car horn for a goal
    Goal umpies in long coats
    Players called Shane and Wayne
    Getting sconned by someone else’s ball in the halftime kick-to-kick
    Stan Alves

  4. Andrew Fithall says

    Full strength beer in the members
    Free bus from the All Nations (unless it is booked out like last Friday)
    Going to the football with my kids
    Going to Geelong Hawthorn games with my wife and her family
    Preliminary Finals
    Martin Flanagan

  5. Going to watch The Cats play football made in heaven over the last 7 years.Eternal!

  6. I like ranting about the things I don’t like about football. Other than that (and its a huge drop off here), I enjoy standing in the rain on the Doug Hawkins wing watching my Bulldogs not win premierships … infinitum

  7. The Ablett/Salmon goalfest in ’93
    Bob Davis
    Bruce Doull’s headband
    Home games
    The bloke playing Classical Gas on the Docklands bridge
    Hot pie in one hand, cold beer in the other on the terrace
    Kicks after the siren to win the game

  8. Luke Reynolds says

    VFL back at Victoria Park
    Watching G.Ablett no matter what Guernsey he’s wearing
    Nige from North Fitzroy
    Brodie Grundy
    Port Adelaide’s turnaround
    Sydney becoming a power
    Gerard Whateley
    Pendles and Swanny
    The tiger army back out in force
    Bucks coaching Collingwood instead of grumpy Mick

  9. Fremantle Football Club
    The transformation of long-suffering Freo fans from doubters to believers
    Freo’s best four of 2013: Michael Johnson, Chris Mayne, Ryan Crowley, Nat Fyfe.
    Hard-working fellas off the rookie list at Freo and Swans
    The Hawks
    The Cats
    Port Adelaide
    Western Bullies last month
    Jaeger O’Meara
    Chad Wingard
    Dylan Roberton
    Tom Mitchell
    Dane Rampe
    Bradley Hill
    Marngrook Footy Show
    The Footy Almanac

  10. Stan the Man says

    Big Carl Ditterich’s headband and white handky in the back of his shorts…why didnt anyone take it off him and complain? Loved your work Carlos.

  11. mickey randall says

    September (finals, better weather and racing too)
    the MCG
    Glenelg oval
    Darren Jarman
    Patrick Dangerfield
    Talking Footy
    Tim Lane’s sense of theatre
    the torp, well-executed
    Tony’s Talkback on the Coodabeens
    Roy and HG’s Festival of the Boot (Part 1)
    the AFL grand final when a brief grab of AC DC’s It’s A Long Way To The Top was accidentally played instead of Advance Australia Fair

  12. 1896

  13. Skip of Skipton says

    Okay, I will bite.

    1979* Forget the Harmes incident, Carlton were goalless at the 20 minute mark of the second quarter, yet had five by half-time.

    2002* A goal is when you kick the ball between the posts, not above them.

    1896* If we are going back to VFA times, then Geelong has 20 flags.

  14. Stephanie Holt says

    Hopefully, AFL taking the Anzac Day game off Essendon, given what the spirit of that day is claimed to represent, and how dubious their (shared) monopoly of it always was anyway …

    Into repute. Hm….

  15. The rise of female footy teams and competitions
    The tap (it’s not a handball but it can be more effective and damaging)

  16. Richard Naco says

    Glenelg Oval.
    The 1973 SANFL Grand Final, at Adelaide Oval (the last one held there).
    Skoda Stadium, and especially the fact that you can buy falafel there!
    Going to Kardinia Park the first time and being advised that Geelong isn’t a footy club, but a community.
    All spectators at any given game showing respect by applauding any player being carried off.
    Dreamtime at the G.
    Multi-Cultural Round.
    Adam Goodes.
    Geelong, and so many local comp & VFL teams making a serious effort for Casey Tutungi
    Cameron Ling – who is what my dad would have called “a capitalist in short pants”
    The women’s game before the Melbourne – Footscray game, but make the next one a fully timed game, please.
    ‘Bundy’ Christensen’s priorities: “It’s only an award. I get to play for Geelong.”
    Jack Riewoldt taking less money in order to stay a Tiger.
    Frank Costa.
    Mrs Scott’s twin boys, now in differing hues of white and blue (and the fact that their wives sit together when their teams play each other).
    Taking two 13yo Japanese kids to the Swans – Tigers game & seeing their eyes light up every time the ball was kicked high and the packs soared.
    Seeing AFL become the great love of said Japanese exchange students over the course of 9 days with us (replacing soccer and basketball).
    Hearing said Japanese exchange students singing “We Are Geelong” together at 11:30pm on their last night before going home to Tokyo.
    Getting a thank you card from one of said Japanese exchange students a month later, which included a postscript that simply said, “Go Cats!”.

  17. Motlop!!!!!!!

  18. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Bob Neil
    Bob Neil ovals 1 and 2
    Adelaide University FC
    SANFL current and SAAFL Real Football
    Footy Almanac
    Norwood FC

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