What's new
The Front Row Forums

Register a free account today to become a member of the world's largest Rugby League discussion forum! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox!

NRL's growth mindset points to 18th team. And it ain't Perth.

Messages
7,030
A lot of people would say the same about yourself, just the tint is a more earthy tone...

I couldn't give a f**k what people say. I'm a proud fan of Queensland rugby league and don't hide it.

Comparing the Broncos- the one ticket in a RL town- with 11 Sydney clubs is comparing apples with oranges.

How?

Because Sydney is over saturated?

The problem is the rugby league fanbase in Sydney is neither large enough nor passionate enough to support nine professional rugby league clubs. The other problem is the rugby league community in Sydney is in denial about the game's popularity and the value of their clubs. They've deluded themselves into thinking there's enough room for nine to eleven clubs and refuse to see that they're not any more important than any other club in the country.

Saying that, when the Crushers bid was approved entry the Broncos board had a hissy fit and (via the state newspaper their major backer happened to also own) used to it promote this idea that the evil NSWRL was trying to make life hard for the poor old Broncos again by forcing them to share Brisbane with another club. This played a considerable part in Superleague becoming more than just an idea in the first place...

The QRL/NSWRL were at war with the Broncos from 1988. Broncos weren't innocent but neither were the QRL/NSWRL. The whole problem could have been avoided if Arthurson and Quayle selected one or two QRL-backee bids in 1988 instead of siding with a private consortium. The NSWRL were stupid enough to allow Broncos to be the sole representative of SEQ until 1995. The XXXX sponsored QRL fuedee with the Power sponsored Broncos over advertising. Broncos did f**k with the BRL clubs by scheduling NSWRL games at Lang Park on Sunday arvos at 3pm, after originally agreeing to leave this slot reserved for BRL games.

NSWRL played all finals game in Sydney to give their clubs an advantage over the Broncos, despite QEII Stadium having a larger capacity than the SFS. This didn't change until 1995.

Ignoring the fact that (as Arthur Beetson pointed out once) for every person you meet in Qld who liked the Broncos, you could find 3 who hated them. The ARL was actually aware of the need for more teams in SEQ long-term and addressed this need.

Only because they were feuding with the Broncos and wanted to knock them back a peg.

Arthurson and Quayle were trying to use the Crushers to take power away from the Broncos. Like I said above, all comes down to Arthurson and Quayle being stupid enough to choose a private consortium over the QRL-based bid in 1987 and letting it control SEQ.

Neither did I suggest every circa 1994 Sydney club had more credibility than the Broncos. Notice that I didn't suggest Cronulla or Penrith defecting to SL made any difference, because (at the time) they were small fish with less than 30 years history and a single Premiership between them. Their support was niche, and whichever comp they played in, the wider RL didn't care. Both clubs have a different standing in the game today, but so does a club like the Cowboys.

Attendances between 1995 and 1997 had Brisbane, Auckland, North Queensland and Newcastle well ahead of the so-called "big" Sydney clubs.

Canterbury didn't draw great attendances around this period.

However, the RL scene was different in 1994 and the Cowboys (like the Warriors) had barely played a game when SL broke out.

On the other hand the Bulldogs (like the Dragons, Manly, Roosters and Parramatta) were a wealthy and established Sydney club with a large and widespread following. If they didn't defect to SL, the only "big" clubs in SL would have been the Broncos and Raiders. Half the population of Brisbane (and that's being generous), some of the people in the ACT plus a bunch of minor/ brand new clubs with no real history. Hence SL wouldn't have been viewed as a serious competition.

Cowboys, Warriors, Broncos and Knights drew the largest crowds between 1995 and 1997.

That makes them bigger and better supported than the "big" Sydney clubs.

Up here in Queensland we didn't view the ARL as a serious competition in 1997 because it was Sydney-centric and its attendances were low.
Difference is that the BRL clubs continued playing after the introduction of the Broncos. The Broncos were never in the same competition, as they were a NSWRL club.

North Sydney, Newtown and Western Sydney are still playing in the NSW Cup, are they not?

After the ARL/ SL split, the factions came together and the criteria was meant to unify the comp. Yet clearly, clubs who sided with SL were graded favourably to clubs who didn't regardless of where they were from or the manner in which they'd stayed afloat during just a few short previous years coinciding with the most divisive and turbulent time in the games' history.

Rationalisation was on the table since 1982. Newtown and Western Sydney were given the flick long before the Broncos and News Ltd were involved. The Bradley Report said the league needed to b rationalised down to 14 teams with no more than 5 in Sydney. Arthurson and Quayle were originally in favour of rationalisation in the 80s. It wasn't a News Ltd conspiracy.

Not every NSW club was a massive pokie palace. Difference is that the likes of Souths, Wests, Illawarra, Balmain etc. couldn't just go to News Limited over this brief period, cap in hand, and get an instant top-up of 6 to 8 figures. They had to rely on annual revenue from their licensed clubs which (again) were not all the size and wealth of Canterbury, Panthers, Parramatta etc.

Illawarra had a chance to join Super League but shot it down.

The fact this discrepancy was ignored in a criteria to define which clubs were "fit" to keep playing in a unified competition was just a little too convenient. Then on top of that, while clubs like Norths and Balmain were deemed unfit to continue standalone according to these "experts" the Warriors (who passed) fell over just 12 months later and had to be rescued by new owners, while the Cowboys all but went to the wall soon after.

Incompetence from the experts, or corruption?
If the game let the Cowboys and Warriors go then it would have lost two very important markets.

Letting a few small and broke NSWRL clubs fold had no impact on the game in Sydney as there was still an oversupply of teams to service the market.

Cowboys have gone on to become one of the most popular and financially stable clubs in the NRL. In 2021 the Cowboys made $8.9m from their sponsors. Sharks received just $4m. Broncos led the way with $12.7m. It shows the Cowboys always had room to grow. The Sydney clubs cannot grow as they're cannibalising one another.
 
Messages
7,030
I wasn't talking about average crowds per club, I was talking about the notion that nobody outside of Sydney cares about clashes like Easts v Souths, Dragons v Dogs or Parra v Manly

SL tried to convince us that Adelaide v Hunter Mariners and Cowboys v Warriors would have the same intensity to it as State Of Origin...or those Sydney rivalries you reckon nobody north of the Hawkesbury or west of Emu Plains gives a shit about....
A Penrith vs Parramatta game on Ch9/9Gem will draw about 3k to 5k viewers in Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth. Less than 100k will watch it on Ch9 in Brisbane. Games involving Melbourne draw bigger ratings across the country.
 

Reflector

Juniors
Messages
1,929
A Penrith vs Parramatta game on Ch9/9Gem will draw about 3k to 5k viewers in Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth. Less than 100k will watch it on Ch9 in Brisbane. Games involving Melbourne draw bigger ratings across the country.
I'm sure you notice plenty of people up your way in Souths/ Dragons/ Bulldogs/ Eels/ Roosters gear

Go and ask them what (for them) are the biggest club games for them in any given season. The clashes they look forward to the most. Is it just their team vs the Broncos/ Cowboys/ Storm?

Or is it largely those same rivalries you don't think these same people would give a shit about, on account of the fact they wear Maroon at Origin time?

You might be surprised.
 
Messages
7,030
I'm sure you notice plenty of people up your way in Souths/ Dragons/ Bulldogs/ Eels/ Roosters gear

Go and ask them what (for them) are the biggest club games for them in any given season. The clashes they look forward to the most. Is it just their team vs the Broncos/ Cowboys/ Storm?

Or is it largely those same rivalries you don't think these same people would give a shit about, on account of the fact they wear Maroon at Origin time?

You might be surprised.
Those people would probably be New South Welshmen who've immigrated to Queensland.
 

Reflector

Juniors
Messages
1,929
I couldn't give a f**k what people say. I'm a proud fan of Queensland rugby league and don't hide it.
I'm a proud Blue and (unlike yourself, evidently) as well as residing in my state of Origin, I also spent plenty of years living in SEQ. I have friends who grew up/ live/ support teams from both sides of the border in the NRL and Origin too.
How?

Because Sydney is over saturated?
Brisbane having too few teams does not mean Sydney is over-saturated. This is a false dichotomy.
The problem is the rugby league fanbase in Sydney is neither large enough nor passionate enough to support nine professional rugby league clubs.
We'll have to agree to disagree here- although I have stated (many times here and elsewhere) that the Wests Tigers in their current guise are a waste of a team and would serve both S-W Sydney and SEQ better if they disbanded and allowed Wests to focus on one area 100% while Balmain links up with Easts Tigers and focused on the other 100%.
The other problem is the rugby league community in Sydney is in denial about the game's popularity and the value of their clubs. They've deluded themselves into thinking there's enough room for nine to eleven clubs and refuse to see that they're not any more important than any other club in the country.
Culling/ merging a bunch of clubs in Sydney demonstrably doesn't grow the game- quite the opposite. Even then, relocations shouldn't be done willy nilly- it has to be the right relocation in terms of the team relocating and the reasons for doing so.
The QRL/NSWRL were at war with the Broncos from 1988. Broncos weren't innocent but neither were the QRL/NSWRL. The whole problem could have been avoided if Arthurson and Quayle selected one or two QRL-backee bids in 1988 instead of siding with a private consortium. The NSWRL were stupid enough to allow Broncos to be the sole representative of SEQ until 1995. The XXXX sponsored QRL fuedee with the Power sponsored Broncos over advertising. Broncos did f**k with the BRL clubs by scheduling NSWRL games at Lang Park on Sunday arvos at 3pm, after originally agreeing to leave this slot reserved for BRL games.
No argument from me here.
NSWRL played all finals game in Sydney to give their clubs an advantage over the Broncos, despite QEII Stadium having a larger capacity than the SFS. This didn't change until 1995.
This may have legitimately been the reason, although it sounds a little too conspiratorial, a little too much like something you would've read in The Courier Mail circa 1994. Until the ARL took over stewardship of the 1st grade competition, the NSWRL (as the name suggests) was the New South Wales competition. Why wouldn't the finals of the New South Wales Rugby League be played at the biggest stadium in NSW?
Only because they were feuding with the Broncos and wanted to knock them back a peg.

Arthurson and Quayle were trying to use the Crushers to take power away from the Broncos. Like I said above, all comes down to Arthurson and Quayle being stupid enough to choose a private consortium over the QRL-based bid in 1987 and letting it control SEQ.
I don't get it- on the one hand SEQ definitely needed more teams, on the other the Crushers had nothing to do with solidifying the game in Brisbane and everything to do with some bad-faith power play by Arko and Quayle? The Broncos (at the time) had teams stacked full of rep stars, were the most recent back to back Premiers and (as the only ticket in town) commanded huge crowds. Why not try and build the game further on top of that?
Attendances between 1995 and 1997 had Brisbane, Auckland, North Queensland and Newcastle well ahead of the so-called "big" Sydney clubs.

Canterbury didn't draw great attendances around this period.



Cowboys, Warriors, Broncos and Knights drew the largest crowds between 1995 and 1997.

That makes them bigger and better supported than the "big" Sydney clubs.
Brisbane: see my previous point
Auckland, North Queensland: brand new teams with the obvious "shiny new thing" factor contributing
Knights: only ticket in a RL heartland with 500k people

What makes those big Sydney clubs mentioned big is that you find supporters all over the place (again, you know just as well as I do that you see plenty of Souths, Roosters, Bulldogs etc support all through Qld). You find as many of them- perhaps even more- than you find Broncos or Storm fans in NSW. Those people can't exactly make it to their teams' home games every second weekend though.
Up here in Queensland we didn't view the ARL as a serious competition in 1997 because it was Sydney-centric and its attendances were low.
The ARL wasn't viewed as a serious competition because the organisation that owned the Broncos also owned the states' only newspaper and (if it didn't ignore the ARL including the teams on their very doorstep) it rubbished it as an inferior competition. Even if the ARL had both the reigning premiers and runners-up from the previous 20-team season, plus Norths, Roosters, Newcastle and a resurgent Parramatta...
North Sydney, Newtown and Western Sydney are still playing in the NSW Cup, are they not?
There's a difference between BRL clubs continuing to play in the BRL as they always had, vs. being told you can no longer play in a competition you've played in for decades (or the equivalent of a competition you've played in for decades) based on erroneous criteria.

It would be like if, back in 1987, the ARL announced that from 1988 it would establish a new 14-team 1st grade competition with teams from NSW AND Qld and the ARL would deem what clubs worthy of admittance based on their criteria...and then clubs like Wynnum, Easts, Brothers and Souths Magpies got knocked back because their financials were deemed inferior to Sydney clubs like Canterbury, Parra, Penrith etc. Imagine having people dismiss them as "just not being good enough/ not fit for a truly progressive national comp" when you pointed out that they didn't have the pokie money to help their bids like the Sydney clubs and thus the whole criteria was unfair?
Rationalisation was on the table since 1982. Newtown and Western Sydney were given the flick long before the Broncos and News Ltd were involved. The Bradley Report said the league needed to b rationalised down to 14 teams with no more than 5 in Sydney. Arthurson and Quayle were originally in favour of rationalisation in the 80s. It wasn't a News Ltd conspiracy.
Again, I pointed this out earlier and noted that even that dinosaur George Piggins knew there was an agenda in the NSWRL to cut teams from as far back as the early 80's...
Illawarra had a chance to join Super League but shot it down.


If the game let the Cowboys and Warriors go then it would have lost two very important markets.
If we're talking future markets then you're correct. However at the time, the Cowboys and Warriors were brand new with no history to speak of and nothing like the support they've grown since.
Letting a few small and broke NSWRL clubs fold had no impact on the game in Sydney as there was still an oversupply of teams to service the market.
Norths went into the red trying to (ironically) do what people such as yourself are demanding of Sydney clubs- relocate and build the new stadium. Apart from that, Norths had always been a well-backed club. It was just shitty timing combined with a shitty criteria with no forward thinking. Balmain still (to this day) have plenty of widespread support, nothing "small" about them. Wests I could agree with- at the time- yet nowadays they're a rich club and virtually ARE the Wests Tigers.
Cowboys have gone on to become one of the most popular and financially stable clubs in the NRL. In 2021 the Cowboys made $8.9m from their sponsors. Sharks received just $4m. Broncos led the way with $12.7m. It shows the Cowboys always had room to grow. The Sydney clubs cannot grow as they're cannibalising one another.
The Sutherland Shire has one of the biggest league areas in Sydney and (on top of that) they are solvent and asset rich. They have every right to be in the competition, and they aren't cannibalising anyone.
 
Messages
7,030
I'm a proud Blue and (unlike yourself, evidently) as well as residing in my state of Origin, I also spent plenty of years living in SEQ. I have friends who grew up/ live/ support teams from both sides of the border in the NRL and Origin too.

My sister's husband supports Parramatta, but he was born and raised in Grafton, NSW. I don't know anyone who was born and raised in Queensland that supports a NSWRL club. I see plenty of Queenslanders supporting the Broncos, Cowboys and Storm. When I ask people who they support they always mention one of those three teams.

Brisbane having too few teams does not mean Sydney is over-saturated. This is a false dichotomy.

No matter which metric you use to gauge sustainability, the data is grim for the Sydney clubs.

Take Cronulla for example. Last year they generated just $4m from sponsorship. Compare that to the Cowboys, who generated $8.9m. Sharks had a good season on the field whereas Cowboys finished second last and hadn't played finals since 2017.

How is it that a club from a regional city of just 180k can command more than twice as much money from their sponsors than a club from Australia's largest and richest city?

Why would a club based in Australia's largest and richest city struggle to attract sponsors?

It's not as if there's no commerce in Sydney. Many businesses are headquartered there. Yet they avoid Sydney clubs like the Sharks as if they are riddled with the plague.

The only logical conclusion is despite having a large commercial sector and 5m people within the metropolis, Sydney has too many teams with small fan bases, thus making it financially unappealing for a company to invest in the Sharks. Sutherland only has 220k people and the Sharks are boxed in by the Dragons to the north and south. There no where for this small club to grow.

The market doesn't lie. If there was a huge groundswell of support for all nine Sydney clubs then businesses would be paying good money to be associated with them.

Dolphins are already richer than the Sydney clubs and commanding huge money through sponsorship because the metropolitan area they're from isn't overcrowded.

We'll have to agree to disagree here- although I have stated (many times here and elsewhere) that the Wests Tigers in their current guise are a waste of a team and would serve both S-W Sydney and SEQ better if they disbanded and allowed Wests to focus on one area 100% while Balmain links up with Easts Tigers and focused on the other 100%.

Wests Tigers should be kicked out and their licence should be given to the Easts Tigers. Balmain is dead and buried.

Culling/ merging a bunch of clubs in Sydney demonstrably doesn't grow the game- quite the opposite. Even then, relocations shouldn't be done willy nilly- it has to be the right relocation in terms of the team relocating and the reasons for doing so.

The game is stronger today than it was when the NSWRFL had 12 teams from Sydney. Crowds have never been bigger and broadcast rights have never been more lucrative. We've lost 3 Sydney teams and need to drop another 3 to make it stronger.

This may have legitimately been the reason, although it sounds a little too conspiratorial, a little too much like something you would've read in The Courier Mail circa 1994. Until the ARL took over stewardship of the 1st grade competition, the NSWRL (as the name suggests) was the New South Wales competition. Why wouldn't the finals of the New South Wales Rugby League be played at the biggest stadium in NSW?

They wanted to be "national", but wanted everything to be based around Sydney.

Why do you think Super League was so popular outside of NSW?

I don't get it- on the one hand SEQ definitely needed more teams, on the other the Crushers had nothing to do with solidifying the game in Brisbane and everything to do with some bad-faith power play by Arko and Quayle? The Broncos (at the time) had teams stacked full of rep stars, were the most recent back to back Premiers and (as the only ticket in town) commanded huge crowds. Why not try and build the game further on top of that?

The Broncos were viewed as a NSWRL club that sunk the final nail in the coffin of the BRL for traditional fans of Brisbane's seven BRL clubs. Crushers were poorly put together club by the QRL that had the NSWRL's approval because they were feuding with the Broncos. Arthurson and Quayle wanted to put a team in Cairns when the Cowboys signed with Super League. That's how those two operated when they had a falling out with a Queensland-based club.

Auckland, North Queensland: brand new teams with the obvious "shiny new thing" factor contributing
Knights: only ticket in a RL heartland with 500k people

Cowboys and Warriors still draw better attendances than many of the Sydney clubs.

What makes those big Sydney clubs mentioned big is that you find supporters all over the place (again, you know just as well as I do that you see plenty of Souths, Roosters, Bulldogs etc support all through Qld). You find as many of them- perhaps even more- than you find Broncos or Storm fans in NSW. Those people can't exactly make it to their teams' home games every second weekend though.

You overestimate how many of them live outside of Sydney.

How many show up to Lang Park to watch them play the Broncos?

1k?

2k?

3k?

Not enough to warrant them keeping their licence in the NRL ahead of teams from Adelaide and Perth that will draw 10k to 15k fans to their home games.

The ARL wasn't viewed as a serious competition because the organisation that owned the Broncos also owned the states' only newspaper and (if it didn't ignore the ARL including the teams on their very doorstep) it rubbished it as an inferior competition. Even if the ARL had both the reigning premiers and runners-up from the previous 20-team season, plus Norths, Roosters, Newcastle and a resurgent Parramatta..

That's not even close to being true. People in Queensland didn't take the ARL seriously because no one gave a f**k about the Crushers, Chargers and Sydney clubs. Going by the shit crowds for most Sydney clubs that year, it looks like most people in Sydney didn't take the ARL seriously either.

Another reason people didn't care for it up here is because the elite players who represented Queensland, New South Wales, Australia and New Zealand signed with Super League while the reserve graders made up the bulk of playing squads in the ARL.

There's a difference between BRL clubs continuing to play in the BRL as they always had, vs. being told you can no longer play in a competition you've played in for decades (or the equivalent of a competition you've played in for decades) based on erroneous criteria.

It would be like if, back in 1987, the ARL announced that from 1988 it would establish a new 14-team 1st grade competition with teams from NSW AND Qld and the ARL would deem what clubs worthy of admittance based on their criteria...and then clubs like Wynnum, Easts, Brothers and Souths Magpies got knocked back because their financials were deemed inferior to Sydney clubs like Canterbury, Parra, Penrith etc. Imagine having people dismiss them as "just not being good enough/ not fit for a truly progressive national comp" when you pointed out that they didn't have the pokie money to help their bids like the Sydney clubs and thus the whole criteria was unfair?

That's exactly what I've from from New South Welshmen about the BRL. I've seen idiots say Wally Lewis only played 30 games in First Grade. The 1986 Wynnum Manly club he played in had four Australian Kangaroos in it and would have toweled up any side from the NSWRL.

Again, I pointed this out earlier and noted that even that dinosaur George Piggins knew there was an agenda in the NSWRL to cut teams from as far back as the early 80's...

If we're talking future markets then you're correct. However at the time, the Cowboys and Warriors were brand new with no history to speak of and nothing like the support they've grown since.

No history?

Rugby league in North Queensland and New Zealand has a long and proud history. It was a New Zealander who introduced rugby league to Sydney.
 
Messages
7,030
Norths went into the red trying to (ironically) do what people such as yourself are demanding of Sydney clubs- relocate and build the new stadium. Apart from that, Norths had always been a well-backed club. It was just shitty timing combined with a shitty criteria with no forward thinking. Balmain still (to this day) have plenty of widespread support, nothing "small" about them. Wests I could agree with- at the time- yet nowadays they're a rich club and virtually ARE the Wests Tigers.
So the Bears were done over by having to fund a stadium?

The NSWRL demanded that the Cowboys build their own stadium and pay the travel and accommodation expenses of all Sydney clubs plus their own travel, which was estimated to be $800k a year. On top of that they had to find $1.6m to pay their players as the annual grant was only $500k back in those days.

The Sutherland Shire has one of the biggest league areas in Sydney and (on top of that) they are solvent and asset rich. They have every right to be in the competition, and they aren't cannibalising anyone.
This is not exactly true. I've seen their financial reports. Before COVID-19 they lost a lot of money and we're forced to sell their stake in the retail development to pay off debt and rebuild their Leagues Club at Endeavour. They got just $39m from selling their stake in the development. They burnt through about half of it paying off debts and rebuilding their Leagues Club. Their biggest source of income is the annual grant, followed by pokie machine revenue.
 

Wb1234

Bench
Messages
4,047
Easts firehawks was a joke... the tigers club as its own entity playing out of suncorp yes. But the mopes running that firehawks bid had tickets on themselves so hard, they couldn't even answer straight forward questions from journos on their "official bid conference" all they come with was copying the L.A lakers app fan service idea, then just kept repeating it... it was one of the most cringeworthy conferences ive ever watched... to say they had a great bid is being disingenuous to both jets and dolphins... they were better off joining with the jets, but that probably would have failed spectacularly with those fools on the bid committee...
"seriously you just don't get it guys, we know what we are doing" one of them actually said this.. it think it was Shane richos brother
Yeh that name was rancid

but the fundamentals were great
 

Wb1234

Bench
Messages
4,047
A lot of people would say the same about yourself, just the tint is a more earthy tone...

Comparing the Broncos- the one ticket in a RL town- with 11 Sydney clubs is comparing apples with oranges.

Saying that, when the Crushers bid was approved entry the Broncos board had a hissy fit and (via the state newspaper their major backer happened to also own) used to it promote this idea that the evil NSWRL was trying to make life hard for the poor old Broncos again by forcing them to share Brisbane with another club. This played a considerable part in Superleague becoming more than just an idea in the first place...

Ignoring the fact that (as Arthur Beetson pointed out once) for every person you meet in Qld who liked the Broncos, you could find 3 who hated them. The ARL was actually aware of the need for more teams in SEQ long-term and addressed this need. Neither did I suggest every circa 1994 Sydney club had more credibility than the Broncos. Notice that I didn't suggest Cronulla or Penrith defecting to SL made any difference, because (at the time) they were small fish with less than 30 years history and a single Premiership between them. Their support was niche, and whichever comp they played in, the wider RL didn't care. Both clubs have a different standing in the game today, but so does a club like the Cowboys.

However, the RL scene was different in 1994 and the Cowboys (like the Warriors) had barely played a game when SL broke out.

On the other hand the Bulldogs (like the Dragons, Manly, Roosters and Parramatta) were a wealthy and established Sydney club with a large and widespread following. If they didn't defect to SL, the only "big" clubs in SL would have been the Broncos and Raiders. Half the population of Brisbane (and that's being generous), some of the people in the ACT plus a bunch of minor/ brand new clubs with no real history. Hence SL wouldn't have been viewed as a serious competition.


Difference is that the BRL clubs continued playing after the introduction of the Broncos. The Broncos were never in the same competition, as they were a NSWRL club.

After the ARL/ SL split, the factions came together and the criteria was meant to unify the comp. Yet clearly, clubs who sided with SL were graded favourably to clubs who didn't regardless of where they were from or the manner in which they'd stayed afloat during just a few short previous years coinciding with the most divisive and turbulent time in the games' history.

Not every NSW club was a massive pokie palace. Difference is that the likes of Souths, Wests, Illawarra, Balmain etc. couldn't just go to News Limited over this brief period, cap in hand, and get an instant top-up of 6 to 8 figures. They had to rely on annual revenue from their licensed clubs which (again) were not all the size and wealth of Canterbury, Panthers, Parramatta etc.

The fact this discrepancy was ignored in a criteria to define which clubs were "fit" to keep playing in a unified competition was just a little too convenient. Then on top of that, while clubs like Norths and Balmain were deemed unfit to continue standalone according to these "experts" the Warriors (who passed) fell over just 12 months later and had to be rescued by new owners, while the Cowboys all but went to the wall soon after.

Incompetence from the experts, or corruption?
Wow what an epic post
 

Wb1234

Bench
Messages
4,047
According to Piggins (although he provides figures to back the claims up):

- He was aware of a long-term plan to merge Souths and the Roosters as far back as the early 90's. He and Nick Politis were invited for dinner at Kerry Packers' Vaucluse house in '94 with the intention to discuss a merger. Piggins shot it down right off the bat. After dinner Politis left, Piggins hopped in a cab with Packer who agreed to giving Souths $500k to continue staying afloat.

- Superleague and the post- SL rationalisation process just sped up what the NSWRL/ ARL had intended to do anyway: axe existing clubs or let them die a natural death. They'd already demonstrated this through cutting Newtown and Wests in '83, and Piggins had heard murmurs about Souths living on borrowed time as well.

- Had Peter Moore not taken Canterbury to SL, it never would've got off the ground. The Bulldogs were a long established, successful Sydney club with 60 years of history. Without them, SL was just a bunch of shelf companies and clubs with no more than 15 years history in the game and wouldn't have been taken seriously.

- The only difference between many of the "insolvent" former ARL clubs and the former SL clubs that "passed" the 14-team criteria was that the former SL clubs received several large cash injections from News Limited to stay afloat. It had virtually nothing to do with certain clubs being better run or more "strategic" to the long-term future of the game than others

- Balmain members were informed on the July 27, 1999 meeting that if they voted for Balmain to stand-alone (instead of electing a merger with Wests) they would fail the criteria. Ultimately, Balmain would have still made the cut if they elected to continue as a standalone club (I'm not confident they would've survived much longer but without merging/ relocating, regardless)

- There was an error in the final criteria that saw Penrith make the cut ranked #14 while Souths were ranked #15. In fact, their rankings were reversed. Piggins offered David Moffett (I think it was) to get a cab out to Penrith Leagues to inform Roger Cowan (then Panthers CEO) of the mistake but Moffett declined.
I’m an ex Balmain fan and I didn’t know that about Balmain

that’s heartbreaking lol

Balmain were one of the most popular Sydney clubs at the time and in many ways have lots of latent support

never heard the last point

the fact south’s are so successful now is a real poke in the eye to super league

i was a seaso ln ticket holder at south’s were a few years
 

Reflector

Juniors
Messages
1,929
I’m an ex Balmain fan and I didn’t know that about Balmain

that’s heartbreaking lol

Balmain were one of the most popular Sydney clubs at the time and in many ways have lots of latent support

never heard the last point

the fact south’s are so successful now is a real poke in the eye to super league

i was a seaso ln ticket holder at south’s were a few years
You can imagine some of the people here, posting back in 2000:

> Stuff Souths, they're a broke Sydney club only pulling 10k crowds, it was right to kick them out!

Like sure, Souths did need a new ownership model- but look at what has manifested from that...

I was saying literally 20 years ago that Redcliffe should enter the NRL and 100% backed them protesting the GC bid using the Dolphins name. Redcliffe are the biggest QRL team in Qld, have as much history as Parra and Manly and (long-term) would appeal to league fans in SEQ who dislike the Broncos for being too "corporate". I maintain that, give it 5-10 years and the odd finals clash or two, and their rivalry with the Broncos will have some real spice to it on similar levels to Easts v Souths or Parra v Canterbury. Cowboys v Broncos is a battle for Qld supremacy but it's not a local derby. Broncos v Dolphins, on the other hand, is a local derby.

Yet we have people claiming nobody will support it outside the Redcliffe diehards or that it'll fail because it's on the "wrong" side of Brisbane etc etc etc.

Unbelievable.
 

Reflector

Juniors
Messages
1,929
My sister's husband supports Parramatta, but he was born and raised in Grafton, NSW. I don't know anyone who was born and raised in Queensland that supports a NSWRL club. I see plenty of Queenslanders supporting the Broncos, Cowboys and Storm. When I ask people who they support they always mention one of those three teams.
This actually explains a lot.

I'm guessing that (if these are indeed the only Maroon league fans you associate with IRL) then there's probably a lot of overlap with their opinions and the stuff you post on here.

I know it because I lived there for many years and I heard it all:

- The Cowboys got bad calls in finals matches because the NRL didn't want a Qld team in the GF after the Maroons winning Origin (pick the year, seriously)

- Sydney people not packing out every game with 30k crowds minimum is unacceptable and proof that have no passion for RL, but it's perfectly reasonable if a Broncos game vs some typically low-drawing team gets a 15k crowd at Suncorp because well, look at how Brisbane are playing/ it's been raining all week/ it's too windy/ it's on a Thursday night and people have work the next day etc etc etc

- The Storm have more fans than any Sydney club

- Joey Johns wasn't as good as Lockyer or Cam Smith and only got awarded immortal status because of NSW bias

- Cowboys v Broncos is the biggest rivalry in the NRL

- Brisbane should get the GF because they sell out Suncorp quicker for Origin than Accor stadium. No, it's nothing to do with one being 50k and the other holding 82k. It's because we're more passionate about league

- Sydney should cut back to 4 teams because not every Sydney club is as big as the Broncos and this is unacceptable

- Sydney people are too precious and should accept mergers/ relocations to Adelaide/ Darwin/ Perth/ Singapore en masse for the good of the game. It's not 1980 anymore and people need to move on. But NSW are the scum of the Earth for all those Qld greats they stole for decades and that should never be forgotten- or forgiven

I've heard every beat of it. I've even heard people seriously claim Cairns should have it's own NRL team because "Well if the NBL could have separate teams in Cairns and Townsville then why can't the NRL?"

And (time and time again) it turns out the same people who espouse these views have never lived in Sydney. Even Wayne Bennett admitted he never really "got" what the NRL and it's traditional clubs mean to people in Sydney until he moved down to coach the Dragons. And this was from a thoroughly knowledgeable RL man through and through who spent more time in Sydney during a single season than the kind of people I'm talking about here spend in their entire lifetimes.
 
Messages
7,030
This actually explains a lot.

I'm guessing that (if these are indeed the only Maroon league fans you associate with IRL) then there's probably a lot of overlap with their opinions and the stuff you post on here.

I know it because I lived there for many years and I heard it all:

- The Cowboys got bad calls in finals matches because the NRL didn't want a Qld team in the GF after the Maroons winning Origin (pick the year, seriously)

- Sydney people not packing out every game with 30k crowds minimum is unacceptable and proof that have no passion for RL, but it's perfectly reasonable if a Broncos game vs some typically low-drawing team gets a 15k crowd at Suncorp because well, look at how Brisbane are playing/ it's been raining all week/ it's too windy/ it's on a Thursday night and people have work the next day etc etc etc

- The Storm have more fans than any Sydney club

- Joey Johns wasn't as good as Lockyer or Cam Smith and only got awarded immortal status because of NSW bias

- Cowboys v Broncos is the biggest rivalry in the NRL

- Brisbane should get the GF because they sell out Suncorp quicker for Origin than Accor stadium. No, it's nothing to do with one being 50k and the other holding 82k. It's because we're more passionate about league

- Sydney should cut back to 4 teams because not every Sydney club is as big as the Broncos and this is unacceptable

- Sydney people are too precious and should accept mergers/ relocations to Adelaide/ Darwin/ Perth/ Singapore en masse for the good of the game. It's not 1980 anymore and people need to move on. But NSW are the scum of the Earth for all those Qld greats they stole for decades and that should never be forgotten- or forgiven

I've heard every beat of it. I've even heard people seriously claim Cairns should have it's own NRL team because "Well if the NBL could have separate teams in Cairns and Townsville then why can't the NRL?"

And (time and time again) it turns out the same people who espouse these views have never lived in Sydney. Even Wayne Bennett admitted he never really "got" what the NRL and it's traditional clubs mean to people in Sydney until he moved down to coach the Dragons. And this was from a thoroughly knowledgeable RL man through and through who spent more time in Sydney during a single season than the kind of people I'm talking about here spend in their entire lifetimes.
The only person on here who wants a team in Cairns is MugaB. He's from Sydney. Everyone else laughs at the notion of a team in Cairns.

Quayle wanted a team in Cairns in 1995. Boustead told him it wouldn’t work.

Bennett changes his tune to suit whatever agenda suits him at the time.

Broncos vs Cowboys is easily the biggest rivalry in the game. It doesn't need to be played on a public holiday to get 40k+.

I just had a look at RL Attendances for 2019 to see how big these rivalries between Sydney clubs are. Parramatta played Penrith in round 1 and drew just 12,604 on Sun 17-Mar-2019 at Penrith Football Stadium. They played again at Parramatta Stadium in front of 16,228 on Thu 23-May-2019 in round 11. Embarrassing crowds.


If you think Sydney needs nine teams, how do you explain the Bradley Report recommending it be rationalised to just five?

How often do Broncos draw just 15k to Lang Park?

The average for the Broncos at Lang Park over the last 15 years has been 30k+. In Sydney the average is under 15k. You cannot blame Queenslanders for pointing this out when it's the norm in Sydney to have low crowds and an anomaly for the Broncos.
 
Last edited:

MugaB

First Grade
Messages
6,218
The only person on here who wants a team in Cairns is MugaB. He's from Sydney. Everyone else laughs at the notion of a team in Cairns.

Quayle wanted a team in Cairns in 1995.

Bennett changes his tune to suit whatever agenda suits him at the time.

Broncos vs Cowboys is easily the biggest rivalry in the game. It doesn't need to be played on a public holiday to get 40k+.

If you think Sydney needs nine teams, how do you explain the Bradley Report recommending it be rationalised to just five?
I want a PNG team dumbshit, if it happens to join forces with cairns then so be it, besides theres enough two headed qlders like you to turn up to barlow to watch it
 

Perth Red

Post Whore
Messages
52,797
Do Sydney people really love their league though? By any metric it is hardly overwhelming. Tv audience, crowds, membership, merch sales. None of them scream 5mill people loving nine clubs.
 

MugaB

First Grade
Messages
6,218
Do Sydney people really love their league though? By any metric it is hardly overwhelming. Tv audience, crowds, membership, merch sales. None of them scream 5mill people loving nine clubs.
I suppose it depends on how much money you are willing to spend on merch or membership etc, i noticed peter wynns got swamped the week leading up to the GF... guess once your team makes it into the GF the "fans" come out of the woodwork
 
Last edited:

The Great Dane

First Grade
Messages
5,843
I suppose it depends on how much money you are willing to spend on merch or membership etc, i noticed peter wynns got swamped the week leading up to the GF... guess once your team makes it into the GF the fans come out of the woodwork
"The fans" in this case being poseurs and bandwagoners whose "fandom" never amounted to anything of substance until "their" team gained some success.

Why are we pretending that people whom wouldn't have been caught dead wearing Parramatta merchandise as recently as a few months ago, and in Penrith's case a few years ago, as if they're any more significant than the teenagers whom buy American sports and soccer merch as a fashion statement.

You're only lying to yourself if you treat the vast majority of these "fans" as anything other than evanescent in their nature.
 

MugaB

First Grade
Messages
6,218
"The fans" in this case being poseurs and bandwagoners whose "fandom" never amounted to anything of substance until "their" team gained some success.

Why are we pretending that people whom wouldn't have been caught dead wearing Parramatta merchandise as recently as a few months ago, and in Penrith's case a few years ago, as if they're any more significant than the teenagers whom buy American sports and soccer merch as a fashion statement.

You're only lying to yourself if you treat the vast majority of these "fans" as anything other than evanescent in their nature.
Well i can safely say, i didn't have to wait till grand final week to get me some merchandise
 

Wb1234

Bench
Messages
4,047
You can imagine some of the people here, posting back in 2000:

> Stuff Souths, they're a broke Sydney club only pulling 10k crowds, it was right to kick them out!

Like sure, Souths did need a new ownership model- but look at what has manifested from that...

I was saying literally 20 years ago that Redcliffe should enter the NRL and 100% backed them protesting the GC bid using the Dolphins name. Redcliffe are the biggest QRL team in Qld, have as much history as Parra and Manly and (long-term) would appeal to league fans in SEQ who dislike the Broncos for being too "corporate". I maintain that, give it 5-10 years and the odd finals clash or two, and their rivalry with the Broncos will have some real spice to it on similar levels to Easts v Souths or Parra v Canterbury. Cowboys v Broncos is a battle for Qld supremacy but it's not a local derby. Broncos v Dolphins, on the other hand, is a local derby.

Yet we have people claiming nobody will support it outside the Redcliffe diehards or that it'll fail because it's on the "wrong" side of Brisbane etc etc etc.

Unbelievable.
Yeh couldn’t agree more
Established 1947
Have one hundred million in assets

in a major growth coridoor
 

Latest posts

Top