AFL TeamsNorth Melbourne Kangaroos

The History Of The North Melbourne

The History Of The North Melbourne Kangaroos

North Melbourne Football Club, founded in 1869, became known as the Kangaroos in 1950.

North Melbourne is the fourth-oldest football club in Australia’s Football League, and it is also one of the oldest clubs in the world. Its administrative and training facilities are located on Arden St. in North Melbourne.

The venue used to host league matches, but now the club’s home games are held at Marvel Stadium in Docklands.

The club joined the Victorian Football League (VFL) in 1925. It is characterized by its inner-city location, working-class background, and determination to succeed despite the odds. The club is renowned for its culture, and those who have had the privilege of playing in royal blue and white were dubbed as “Shinboners”, a term that dates back to 19th-century abattoir workers.

The History Of The North Melbourne
The History Of The North Melbourne

The club is known as ‘Shinboner’.

The motto of the club is Victoria amat Curam, Latin for Victory Demands Dedication.

Originally competing in local leagues, the club joined the Victorian Football Association (VFA) in 1874 and later made its mark in the Victorian Football League (VFL) from 1925 onwards. Despite early struggles, North Melbourne experienced a breakthrough in the 1970s under the guidance of legendary coach Ron Barassi, clinching their first VFL premiership in 1975. The club underwent a significant rebranding in 1999, adopting the moniker “Kangaroos” to better reflect their iconic kangaroo emblem. North Melbourne has faced financial challenges and fluctuating on-field performances throughout its modern era, yet remains anchored by a loyal fanbase and a commitment to community engagement. Key players like Wayne Carey and Glenn Archer have left an indelible mark on the club’s legacy, contributing to its enduring presence in the Australian football landscape. Today, North Melbourne continues to strive for success while honouring its rich heritage as one of Australia’s oldest football clubs.

It is one of the oldest clubs in the world. It was founded in the North Melbourne suburb in 1869. The club’s home in Arden Street is still its headquarters, as well as the training facility and home field for its women. The senior men’s side of the club plays their home matches in Marvel Stadium, Docklands, Melbourne, Victoria. Blundstone Arena, Hobart, Tasmania, is used as a second home ground by the women’s side.

The club’s logo is a grey kangaroo in the club uniform. Its use dates back to the mid-20th Century. The club’s unofficial name is “The Shinboners”, which comes from its abattoir worker origins in the 19th century. The club motto is victor amat curam which means “victory requires dedication”. The Kangaroos field teams not only in the AFL but also in the VFL women’s, Victorian Football League and AFL women’s competitions.


The North Melbourne Kangaroos are located in the inner suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Historically, the club’s base has been in the suburb of North Melbourne, which is situated just north-west of Melbourne’s central business district. The club was originally founded in this area and has maintained strong ties to its local community.

In terms of its playing and training facilities:

  • Training Facilities: The club’s training and administrative facilities are situated in the Arden Street Oval precinct in North Melbourne. This has been a longstanding training base for the club and continues to be a hub for its operations.

Overall, while North Melbourne Kangaroos play their matches at Marvel Stadium, their historical and community roots are deeply embedded in the North Melbourne suburb of Melbourne.

North Melbourne Kangaroos Members
North Melbourne Kangaroos Members

North Melbourne Kangaroos: Home Stadium

North Melbourne Kangaroos primarily play their home games at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne. Marvel Stadium, formerly Etihad Stadium, has been the club’s main home ground since its completion in 2000. Located in the Docklands area of Melbourne, Marvel Stadium offers a modern and spacious venue for AFL matches, accommodating large crowds and providing a vibrant atmosphere for fans. Additionally, North Melbourne occasionally plays home games at Blundstone Arena in Hobart, Tasmania, further extending their reach and support base beyond Victoria. While historically associated with Arden Street Oval, Marvel Stadium is now the primary venue for North Melbourne’s AFL fixtures, showcasing the club’s presence in the heart of Melbourne’s sporting landscape.

Features of Marvel Stadium:

  1. Capacity: The stadium can accommodate up to 53,000 spectators for AFL matches.
  2. Design: It features a retractable roof, allowing events to be held in all weather conditions.
  3. Flexibility: Beyond AFL, Marvel Stadium hosts a variety of events such as concerts, international rugby matches, soccer games, and other large-scale entertainment events.
  4. Location: Situated near Melbourne’s central business district, the stadium is easily accessible via public transport and has become a significant landmark in the city’s sporting landscape.
  5. Corporate Facilities: The stadium offers numerous corporate hospitality suites and facilities, making it a popular choice for corporate events and functions.

Marvel Stadium has played a pivotal role in the development of Australian rules football and has been a central venue for major sporting and entertainment events in Melbourne since its opening in 2000.

Premiership Success: North Melbourne Kangaroos

North Melbourne Players
North Melbourne Players

North Melbourne Kangaroos, known for their tenacity and occasional underdog status, have achieved notable success in the Australian Football League (AFL) with four premierships to their name. Their premiership victories are as follows:

  1. Premierships:
    • 1975: Coached by Ron Barassi, North Melbourne secured their maiden VFL premiership by defeating Hawthorn in a thrilling Grand Final.
    • 1977: Under the leadership of coach Barry Cable, North Melbourne clinched their second premiership by defeating Collingwood in another closely contested Grand Final.
    • 1996: Coached by Denis Pagan, North Melbourne claimed their third premiership by overcoming Sydney in the Grand Final, marking a resurgence after a period of rebuilding.
    • 1999: In their final season as the North Melbourne Football Club before rebranding as the Kangaroos, the club, led by coach Denis Pagan, achieved their fourth premiership by defeating Carlton in the Grand Final.

North Melbourne Kangaroos Finals Appearances

North Melbourne Kangaroos have made a total of 32 finals appearances in the history of the Australian Football League (AFL) and its predecessor, the Victorian Football League (VFL). Here’s a breakdown of their final appearances:

  • VFL Era (1925-1989):
    • North Melbourne made finals appearances in 1949, 1950, 1952, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958, 1959, 1965, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, and 1988.
  • AFL Era (1990-present):
    • North Melbourne has made finals appearances in 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2007, and 2008.

These final appearances reflect North Melbourne’s status as a competitive team in the AFL/VFL, consistently contending for premiership glory across different eras of Australian rules football.

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