Fremantle Football Club
Full nameFremantle Football Club Limited[1]
Nickname(s)Dockers, Freo
Indigenous rounds: Walyalup
2023 season
After finalsAFL:
Home-and-away seasonAFL: 14th
AFLW: 13th
Leading goalkickerAFL: Jye Amiss (41 Goals)
AFLW: Aine Tighe (9 Goals)
Best and fairestAFL: Caleb Serong
AFLW: Ange Stannett
Club details
Founded21 July 1994; 29 years ago (1994-07-21)
ColoursAFL:   Purple   white
AFLW:   Purple   white   Crimson
CompetitionAFL: Men
AFLW: Women
ChairmanDale Alcock
CoachAFL: Justin Longmuir
AFLW: Lisa Webb
Captain(s)AFL: Alex Pearce
AFLW: Hayley Miller
Ground(s)AFL: Perth Stadium 2018-present (capacity: 61,266)
 AFLW: Fremantle Oval 2017–present (capacity: 10,000)
Former ground(s)WACA Ground (1995–2000)
Subiaco Oval (1995–2017)
Training ground(s)Cockburn ARC (2017–present)
Fremantle Oval (1995–2017)
Other information
Current season

The Fremantle Football Club, nicknamed the Dockers, is a professional Australian rules football club competing in the Australian Football League (AFL), the sport's elite competition. The team was founded in 1994 to represent the port city of Fremantle, a stronghold of Australian rules football in Western Australia. The Dockers were the second team from the state to be admitted to the competition, following the West Coast Eagles in 1987. Both Fremantle and the West Coast Eagles are owned by the West Australian Football Commission (WAFC), with a board of directors operating Fremantle on the commission's behalf.

Despite having participated in and won several finals matches, Fremantle is one of only three active AFL clubs not to have won a premiership (the others being Gold Coast and Greater Western Sydney), though it did claim a minor premiership in 2015 and reached the 2013 Grand Final, losing to Hawthorn.[2][3] High-profile players who forged careers at Fremantle include All-Australian Matthew Pavlich, Hall of Fame inductee Peter Bell, and dual Brownlow Medal winner Nat Fyfe, who previously captained the club under both Ross Lyon and current head coach Justin Longmuir. Originally based at Fremantle Oval, the club's training and administrative facilities are now located nearby at Cockburn ARC in Cockburn Central, whilst its home ground is the 60,000-capacity Perth Stadium in Burswood.

Fremantle has also fielded a women's team in the AFL Women's league since the competition's inception in 2017. They are currently coached by Lisa Webb and captained by Hayley Miller. Their most successful season was the 2020 season, in which the team was undefeated, but was ultimately cancelled without a premiership awarded due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[4]

Australian rules football in Fremantle

See also: Australian rules football in Western Australia, East Fremantle Football Club, South Fremantle Football Club, Fremantle Football Club (1881–1899), Fremantle Football Club (1882–1886), and North Fremantle Football Club

1979 WANFL Grand Final G B Total
East Fremantle 21 19 145
South Fremantle 16 16 112
Venue: Subiaco Oval crowd: 52,781

The port city of Fremantle, Western Australia has a rich footballing history, hosting the state's first organised game of Australian rules in 1881.[5] Fremantle's first teams, the Fremantle Football Club, the Union/Fremantle Football Club and East Fremantle Football Club, dominated the early years of the West Australian Football League (WAFL), winning 24 of the first 34 premierships.[6] Since 1897, Fremantle Oval has been the main venue for Australian rules football matches in the city. Until the opening of Perth Stadium in 2018, the record attendance for an Australian rules football game in Western Australia stood at 52,781 for the 1979 WANFL Grand Final between East Fremantle and South Fremantle at Subiaco Oval.

Champion footballers who forged careers playing for Fremantle-based clubs include, among other Australian Football Hall of Fame inductees, Steve Marsh, Jack Sheedy, John Todd, George Doig, William Truscott and Bernie Naylor.


Early years (1993–2006)

Fremantle players warming up prior to a game in the club's original guernsey, 2009.

Despite the long history of Australian rules football in Fremantle, the expansion of the then-Victorian Football League into Western Australia, took the form of a state-wide club, with the creation of the West Coast Eagles, in 1987. Soon afterwards, there were negotiations between WAFL clubs East Fremantle and South Fremantle, regarding formation of a second WA-based VFL club, as a joint venture. Due to exclusive rights clauses in contracts between the West Coast Eagles and the VFL, a second WA franchise was not legally possible until after the 1992 season. Moreover, the model of a joint venture between two WAFL clubs was opposed by the West Australian Football Commission (WAFC).[7]

On 14 December 1993, the AFL announced that a new team, to be based in Fremantle, would enter the league in 1995, with the provisional name "Fremantle Sharks." The licence had cost the WAFC $4 million.[8] On 21 July 1994, the names "Fremantle Football Club", "Fremantle Dockers" and the club colours of purple, red, green and white were announced.

A first training session for the inaugural squad was held on 31 October 1994 at Fremantle Oval.

The team endured some tough years near the bottom of the premiership ladder, until they finished fifth after the home and away rounds in 2003 and made the finals for the first time. The elimination final against eighth-placed Essendon at Subiaco Oval was then the club's biggest ever game, but ended in disappointment for the home team, with the finals experience of Essendon proving too strong for the young team. They then missed making the finals in the following two seasons, finishing both years with 11 wins, 11 losses and only 1 game outside the top eight.

After an average first half to the 2006 AFL season, Fremantle finished the year with a club-record nine straight wins to earn themselves third position at the end of the home and away season with a club-best 15 wins. In the qualifying final against Adelaide at AAMI Stadium, the Dockers led for the first three-quarters before being overrun by the Crows. The following week saw the club win its first finals game in the semi-final against Melbourne at Subiaco Oval. The club subsequently earned a trip to Sydney to play in its first ever preliminary final, where they lost by 35 points at ANZ Stadium to the Sydney Swans.

Recent history (2007–present)

In 2007, following Chris Connolly's resignation midway through the season, Mark Harvey, a three-time premiership player with Essendon, was appointed caretaker coach for the club. During his seven matches for 2007, Harvey coached the Dockers to four wins and three losses.[9] The club came 11th that year, and Harvey was appointed full-time coach at the end of the season. The following year saw the club slump to 14th.[9]

In Round 15, 2009, Fremantle recorded the lowest score in its history and of the 2000s, scoring only 1.7 (13) to the Adelaide Crows' 19.16 (130).[9] It scored just one point in the first half and the only goal scored came in the third quarter.

After finishing sixth in 2010, the club played in the finals for the first time since 2006. The team played Hawthorn at Subiaco Oval, and despite being considered underdogs, went on to win by 30 points. The win came from strong performances from Luke McPharlin and Adam McPhee who limited the impact of Lance Franklin and Luke Hodge, respectively.[10] The team's second ever win in a finals match qualified them for a semi-final to be played against the Geelong Cats at the MCG the following week. In a one-sided contest, the Dockers lost by 69 points.[11]

The 2011 season saw Fremantle lose just once in the first six rounds before ending the year in 11th position after losing their final seven games. Fremantle's collapse was considered a result of a heavy injury count that began in the pre-season.[12]

In September 2011, Mark Harvey was sensationally sacked by the club in favour of still-contracted St Kilda coach Ross Lyon.[12]

Fremantle qualified for the finals in 2012 after finishing in seventh position. In their elimination final against Geelong, the Dockers won their first ever finals game away from home with a 16-point victory at the MCG behind Matthew Pavlich's six goals.[13] Fremantle subsequently lost to the Crows in Adelaide the following week, ending their finals campaign.

In 2013, Fremantle finished the home-and-away season in third position with a club-best 16 wins. In their qualifying final against the Cats in Geelong, the Dockers produced a first-round upset with a 15-point victory to advance through to a home preliminary final.[14] In the preliminary final, the Dockers defeated the reigning premiers, the Sydney Swans, by 25 points to advance to their maiden AFL Grand Final. In the 2013 grand final, the Dockers were defeated by Hawthorn by a margin of 15 points.

Panorama of the 2013 AFL Grand Final, Fremantle's only grand final appearance

In 2014, the club reached the finals for the third successive year with a top-four finish and 16 wins, but despite earning a double chance, they were knocked out after losses to Sydney away and Port Adelaide at home. Nat Fyfe was awarded the Leigh Matthews Trophy for winning the AFL Players' Association MVP award.[15]

In 2015, the club were crowned minor premiers for the first time in their history, earning their first piece of silverware with the McClelland Trophy.[2] However, the club failed to convert this into a grand final appearance, losing to Hawthorn by 27 points in its home preliminary final. Fremantle ended their season with Nat Fyfe becoming the club's first Brownlow Medalist.[16]

Season 2016 marked Matthew Pavlich's final season in the AFL, as Fremantle missed the finals following a 10-game losing streak to start the year, finishing in 16th position with just four wins.[17]

Ross Lyon was sacked as coach on 20 August 2019 after the club failed to qualify for the finals.[18] He was replaced by Justin Longmuir.[19]

Longmuir's first season was during the COVID-19-affected 2020 AFL season, which was shortened from 22 matches to 17.[20] Fremantle would lose their first four games before finding form and finishing 12th on the ladder with 7 wins and 10 losses.[21]

The 2022 AFL season would prove to be a breakout year for the Dockers, who qualified for finals for the first time since the 2015 AFL season[22] and were in contention for a top-4 finish throughout the season before finishing fifth with fifteen wins, six losses, and one draw.[23] Fremantle's return to finals saw them play the Western Bulldogs in an elimination final at Optus Stadium.[24] Fremantle were dominated in the early stages of the game, with the Bulldogs holding a 42–1 lead at the nine-minute mark of the second term. Fremantle would go on to kick 11 of the last 13 goals to win the game by 13 points.[25] Fremantle next faced Collingwood in a semi-final at the MCG in front of a crowd of over 90,000, losing the game by 20 points.[26]

After losing their opening 2 games of the 2023 AFL season, Fremantle recorded their first win in the 56th Western Derby, beating the Eagles by 41 points. Despite a mid-season resurgence, beating both 2022 Grand Finalists in consecutive weeks, the Dockers would fade out to finish 15th on the ladder.[27]


After struggling in their early start-up years, Fremantle eventually matured to be a more established and consistently more competitive club in the AFL, with an overall win percentage of 52.5% as of June 2023, ranked 4th out of the 21 teams to have ever played in the VFL/AFL league.[28] Despite this impressive win record, they are yet to win a premiership. This fact has earned them the nickname "Flagmantle", which is an optimistic or derisive term depending on context.[29][30][31] The Dockers' halcyon years took place between 2013 and 2015, where they earned three successive top-four finishes to go with their only grand final appearance (2013) and their only minor premiership (2015).

Fremantle played its first drawn match in Round 8, 2013, against the Sydney Swans.[32] In 2006, against St Kilda at Aurora Stadium in Launceston, they played in a controversial Round 5 match (dubbed "Sirengate") that initially ended in a draw. However, the AFL overturned the draw result the following Wednesday after the match; the controversy was due to an off-field error made by the timekeepers not sounding the siren for long enough to confirm that the umpires heard it, as well as the siren not being loud enough for the field umpires to here over the roar of the crowd in the first place, and Fremantle were eventually declared as one-point winners with no protest from St Kilda.[33] It marked the first time a game result had been later overturned since 1900.[34]

Year-by-year performance

  Home and away Finals Coach
Year P W D L % Rank P W L Rank
2023 23 10 0 13 96.68 14/18 14/18 Longmuir
2022 22 15 1 6 117 5/18 2 1 1 6/18 Longmuir
2021 22 10 0 12 86.5 11/18 11/18 Longmuir
2020 17 7 0 10 93.72 12/18 12/18 Longmuir
2019 22 9 0 13 91.90 13/18 13/18 Lyon/Hale
2018 22 8 0 14 76.24 14/18 14/18 Lyon
2017 22 8 0 14 74.40 14/18 14/18 Lyon
2016 22 4 0 18 74.28 16/18 16/18 Lyon
2015 22 17 0 5 118.73 1/18 2 1 1 3/18 Lyon
2014 22 16 0 6 130.40 4/18 2 0 2 6/18 Lyon
2013 22 16 1 5 134.10 3/18 3 2 1 2/18 Lyon
2012 22 14 0 8 115.67 7/18 2 1 1 6/18 Lyon
2011 22 9 0 13 83.11 11/17 11/17 Harvey
2010 22 13 0 9 103.88 6/16 2 1 1 6/16 Harvey
2009 22 6 0 16 77.34 14/16 14/16 Harvey
2008 22 6 0 16 93.73 14/16 14/16 Harvey
2007 22 10 0 12 102.55 11/16 11/16 Connolly/Harvey
2006 22 15 0 7 109.83 3/16 3 1 2 3/16 Connolly
2005 22 11 0 11 100.15 10/16 10/16 Connolly
2004 22 11 0 11 100.64 9/16 9/16 Connolly
2003 22 14 0 8 103.13 5/16 1 0 1 7/16 Connolly
2002 22 9 0 13 88.33 13/16 13/16 Connolly
2001 22 2 0 20 72.02 16/16 16/16 Drum/Allan
2000 22 8 0 14 72.04 12/16 12/16 Drum
1999 22 5 0 17 82.44 15/16 15/16 Drum
1998 22 7 0 15 76.37 15/16 15/16 Neesham
1997 22 10 0 12 91.90 12/16 12/16 Neesham
1996 22 7 0 15 92.28 13/16 13/16 Neesham
1995 22 8 0 14 92.85 13/16 13/16 Neesham
Total/Avg 634 285 2 347 93.01 17 7 10
Overall 651 292 2 357 92.91
P = Played, W = Win, D = Draw, L = Loss, % = Score for/Score against.    Source: AFL Tables

Club identity


Fremantle Football Club logo (1999–2010)

The club is nicknamed the "Dockers" in reference to Fremantle's history as a port city. Shortly after the club was launched in 1994, Levi Strauss & Co., which produces the Dockers brand of clothing, challenged the club's right to use the name "Fremantle Dockers", specifically on clothing.[35] As a result, the club and the AFL discontinued the official use of the "Dockers" nickname in 1997. However, it remained in common usage both inside and outside the club, and continued to appear in the official team song "Freo Way to Go" and as the title of the official club magazine Docker.[36] In October 2010, the strong association that members and fans have with the "Dockers" nickname led the club to form a new arrangement with Levi Strauss & Co which allows the club to officially use the nickname "Dockers" everywhere including on clothing and other brand elements.[37] This name change was made in conjunction with changes to the club logo and playing strip.[38]


Fremantle kit with the chevron arrow design, adopted in 2011

Until 2011 the Fremantle Football Club used the anchor symbol as the basis for all of their guernseys. The home guernsey was purple, with a white anchor on the front separating the chest area into red and green panels, representing the traditional maritime port and starboard colours. The colours also acknowledged Fremantle's large Italian community, which historically has been associated with the city's fishing community.[39] The away or clash guernsey was all white with a purple anchor. Since the end of the 2010 home and away season, the home jumper is purple with three white chevrons, and the away jumper is white with purple chevrons.[40]

One game each year is designated as the Purple Haze game, where an all-purple jumper with a white anchor is worn. This game is used to raise money for the Starlight Children's Foundation. After the guernsey re-design to a predominately purple home jumper, Fremantle wore the Starlight Foundation logo, a yellow star, above the highest chevron for their Purple Haze game.

Since 2003, the AFL has hosted an annual Heritage Round. Until 2006, Fremantle wore a white guernsey with three red chevrons, to emulate the jumper worn by the original Fremantle Football Club in 1885. However, in 2007, the selected round had Fremantle playing Sydney, who also wear red and white. An alternative blue and white striped design was used, based on the jumper worn by the East Fremantle Football Club in their 1979 WAFL Grand Final win over the South Fremantle Football Club. This Fremantle Derby held the record, prior to the opening of Optus Stadium, for the highest attendance at a football game of any code in Western Australia, with 52,781 attending at Subiaco Oval.[5]

In September 2008, newly appointed CEO Steve Rosich confirmed that the Fremantle Football Club would undergo a thorough review of all areas, including the club's team name, song, guernsey, and logo in a bid to boost its marketability.[41] However he later confirmed that the purple colour will be maintained as it had become synonymous with Fremantle.[42]

Home ground and headquarters

Fremantle Oval, home of the club's original training facilities

Fremantle Football Club had its original training and administration facilities at Fremantle Oval from 1995 until 2017. On 21 February 2017 the club moved its training and administration facilities to Cockburn ARC, a professional sports training facility and community recreation centre that was constructed in 2015–17 at a price of $109 million, located in the suburb of Cockburn Central.[43]

The team's home games are played at Optus Stadium, a 61,000 seat multi-purpose stadium located in the suburb of Burswood. The club began playing home matches at the venue in 2018, having previously played home matches at Subiaco Oval from 2001 onward and before that the WACA Ground from 1995 to 2000.


The official song of Fremantle is "Freo Way to Go", a truncated version of the club's original song, "Freo Heave Ho", written by Ken Walther. "Freo Way to Go" was adopted in 2011 following a poll on the Dockers' official website, beating out three other newly composed songs, including "Freo Freo", which was written by Fremantle-based indie rock group and the Dockers' then-number one ticket holder, Eskimo Joe.[44] The poll took place around the same time that the club's guernsey and logo were also updated.[38][45]

Unlike other AFL team songs, "Freo Way to Go" is played to a contemporary rock tune. "Freo Heave Ho" also had a section based on Igor Stravinsky's arrangement of the traditional Russian folk song, "Song of the Volga Boatmen",[46] which was dropped in 2011, leaving only the original composition of Walther.

Due to its unconventional style, the song is derided by many opposition supporters and defended with equally fierce loyalty by many fans.[47][48] "Every other team song sounds like a 'Knees Up Mother Brown' from previous eras. We've got a backbeat", boasted author and Fremantle fan Tim Winton.[49] In 2021, in response to being named the club's new number one ticket holder, Tame Impala frontman and Fremantle local Kevin Parker released a new Fremantle "pump-up" track to be played at home games. Bolstering the Fremantle connection, the song draws inspiration from AC/DC.[50]


Johnny "The Doc" Docker, Fremantle's official mascot since 2003

Ownership and management

The club is owned by the West Australian Football Commission (WAFC). Since 2003, a board of directors controls the operation of the club, on behalf of the WAFC. Prior to this, a two-tier arrangement was in place, with a Board of Management between the board of directors and the commission. The initial club chief executive officer was David Hatt, who had come from a hockey background, and the inaugural club chairman was Ross Kelly, who had played for West Perth. It was a deliberate act by the commission to avoid having administrators from either East Fremantle or South Fremantle in key roles, as they wanted the club to be bigger than just representing Fremantle.[51]

Kelly resigned at the end of 1998, replaced by Ross McLean. Whilst he presided over some key financial decisions, including the building of the club's administrative and training centre at Fremantle Oval and the deferment of the licence fee to the AFL, it was Fremantle's lowest point onfield, culminating in a two-win season in 2001 which saw the coach Damian Drum be sacked mid-year. McLean resigned following an inadvertent breach of the salary cap.[52]

In early 2001 Hatt accepted a government job and Cameron Schwab was appointed. After weathering the fallout from the disastrous 2001 season, Schwab and the new chairman, local West Australian retailing businessman Rick Hart, set about rebuilding the club. A former recruiting manager, Schwab focused on building up the on-field performance by recruiting high-profile players in Trent Croad, Peter Bell and Jeff Farmer, as well as coach Chris Connolly and with Hart then focused on enhancing the corporate and financial standing of the club.[53] The club membership grew every year from 2002 until 2008[54] and the final licence payment was made to the AFL in 2005.

Schwab chose to return to Melbourne in 2008 and was replaced as CEO by Steve Rosich, who had previously worked for the West Coast Eagles. A year later Hart resigned as president and Steve Harris, who runs The Brand Agency and had produced advertising for Fremantle since 2002, took over at the end of 2009. Harris had been on the board since November 2008, the first club chairman or president to have previously served on the board.[55] The club has developed into one of the wealthiest clubs in the league and their surprise recruitment of Ross Lyon to replace Mark Harvey as coach at the end of the 2011 is seen as an example of their ruthless drive for sustained success.[56] In 2014, Harris resigned as president and was replaced by the then vice president, Perth property developer Dale Alcock.[57]


Year Kit Manufacturer Major Sponsor Shorts Sponsor Bottom Back Sponsor Top Back Sponsor
1995 Hard Yakka Alinta Gas Hard Yakka
1996–97 HBF Home and Car Insurance
1998–99 Adidas
2000 Choose Alinta Gas Southern Land Rover Alinta Gas
2001 Russell Athletic Ford
2003 Bankwest
2004 Bankwest Allphones Bankwest
2005 Reebok
2006–08 LG ME Bank LG
2009 LG (Home) Integrated (Away) Integrated (Home) LG (Away)
2010 Woodside Petroleum (Home) Integrated (Away) Integrated (Home) Woodside Petroleum (Away)
2011 ISC
2012–13 Woodside Petroleum (Home) Programmed (Away) Programmed Programmed (Home) Woodside Petroleum (Away)
2014–15 Amcom
2016–2019 Choices Flooring
2020 Programmed (Home) Woodside Petroleum (Away)
2021–present Burley-Sekem


Western Derby

Main article: Western Derby

Action from a 2008 Western Derby

Fremantle's biggest rivalry is with the other Western Australian team, the West Coast Eagles, who they play twice each year in the home and away season, in the fiercely contested "Western Derby" matches (Pronounced /ˈdɜːrbi/ in Western Australia). West Coast were victorious in the first nine games, before Fremantle won in round 16, 1999, after which has prompted a fairly even Derby result with Fremantle at 20 and West Coast at 21 Derby wins. The term "derby" is named after the Fremantle Derby games between East and South Fremantle in the West Australian Football League, which for almost 100 years have been considered some of the most important games in the local league.[58] The 1979 WANFL Grand Final holds the football attendance record for the now-closed Subiaco Oval of 52,781.[59]

St Kilda controversies

The Dockers and the St Kilda Football Club have seen a number of controversial events between them, most notably the AFL siren controversy at York Park in 2006. The match was sent into a state of confusion with Fremantle leading by one point when the siren (which had not been very loud all game) was not heard by the umpires who then allowed St Kilda tagger Steven Baker to score a point after time had elapsed and, as a result, the match ended in a draw. The outcome of the game was taken to the AFL Commission and it was decided during the week that as the siren had gone Fremantle were judged to be the winners, disallowing Baker's point.[60]

During the 2011 off-season, Fremantle sacked coach Mark Harvey and replaced him with then-St Kilda coach Ross Lyon in controversial circumstances. The move was met with much criticism towards Fremantle's president, Steve Harris, and CEO, Steve Rosich, claiming that they had "backstabbed" Harvey. Lyon was also met with widespread criticism and was accused of backstabbing St Kilda by many Saints supporters as the club was made aware that Fremantle had approached Lyon during St Kilda's lead-up to its finals campaign. The two clubs contested a highly anticipated Friday night match in Round 4 of the 2012 AFL season at Etihad Stadium, with Fremantle winning by 13 points and Lyon being booed throughout the match.[61] Lyon became Fremantle's longest serving and most successful coach before being sacked in 2019. He later returned for a second coaching stint at St Kilda in 2023, and his first game back was against Fremantle.


Current squad

See also Fremantle Football Club drafting and trading history for the complete list of Fremantle's draft selections, delistings and trades
Senior list Rookie list Coaching staff

Head coach

Assistant coaches

  • (c) Captain(s)
  • (vc) Vice-captain(s)
  • (B) Category B rookie

Updated: 18 January 2024
Source(s): Players, Coaches

Leadership (Captain/Coach)

Matthew Pavlich captained the club from 2007 to 2015.
Seasons Captain[67] Coach[67]
1995–1996 Ben Allan Gerard Neesham
1997–1998 Peter Mann Gerard Neesham
1999 Chris Bond Damian Drum
2000–2001 Shaun McManus and Adrian Fletcher (co-captains) Damian Drum/Ben Allan from Rd 10, 2001
2002–2006 Peter Bell Chris Connolly
2007 Matthew Pavlich Chris Connolly/Mark Harvey from Rd 16
2008–2011 Matthew Pavlich Mark Harvey
2012–2015 Matthew Pavlich Ross Lyon
2016 David Mundy Ross Lyon
2017–2019 Nathan Fyfe Ross Lyon/David Hale from Rd 23
2020–2022 Nathan Fyfe Justin Longmuir
2023– Alex Pearce Justin Longmuir

Reserves team

For most of Fremantle's history, players have played for various West Australian Football League (WAFL) teams when not selected to play for the Fremantle AFL team. Players recruited from the WAFL have remained with their original club, and players recruited from interstate have been allocated to teams via a draft system. Since the 2014 season, the Peel Thunder Football Club has served as the host club for the Fremantle Dockers, an arrangement which will see Fremantle's reserves players playing in the WAFL for Peel Thunder Football Club. An attempt to field a standalone Fremantle reserves side in the WAFL was rejected by the other WAFL clubs.[68] A similar host club system was used in 1999 when South Fremantle was the aligned club but was cancelled after a single season.

AFL Women's team


Fremantle AFL Women's team huddle prior to a practice match in January 2017

In May 2016, the club launched a bid to enter a team in the inaugural AFL Women's season in 2017.[69] As part of the bid, the team would guarantee all players education and job opportunities with the club and the partnering Curtin University.[69]

Fremantle beat out a bid from rivals West Coast when they were granted a license on 15 June 2016.[70]

Kiara Bowers and Kara Antonio were the club's first signings, unveiled along with the league's other 14 marquee players on 27 July 2016.[71] A further 24 senior players and two rookie players were added to the club's inaugural list in the league's drafting and signing period.

Former South Fremantle assistant coach, Michelle Cowan was appointed the team's inaugural head coach in July 2016.[72]

The club's initial bid outlined plans for a game each at Domain Stadium and at Curtin University's Bentley campus as well as up to two remaining matches held at the club training base in the city of Cockburn.[69] The club eventually played two home games at Fremantle Oval, one at Domain Stadium and one in Mandurah.[73] In 2018, the Dockers hosted the first football game at Perth Stadium but will play the remainder of their home games at Fremantle Oval.

The Dockers struggled in their inaugural season, only winning one of seven games and finishing seventh out of eight teams on the ladder. They fared slightly better in 2018, winning three matches, but again finished seventh on the ladder.[74]

In 2019, Fremantle had their most successful season, losing only one game during the home-and-away matches (to eventual premiers Adelaide and making the finals for the first time. The team, now coached by Trent Cooper and with Kiara Bowers making her long-awaited debut after two injury affect years, started the year with a high-scoring victory over Melbourne in the opening round and then kicked their highest ever score, 10.7 (67), in round 2 against Brisbane. Despite having won two more games than Carlton, the controversial conference system saw Carlton host the knock out preliminary final[75] and inflict Fremantle's second defeat of the year. In the post-season awards, Bowers[76] and Dana Hooker[77] came second behind Erin Phillips in the AFLW MVP award and AFL Women's best and fairest award, respectively. Bowers, Hooker and Gemma Houghton were all named in the AFL Women's All-Australian team.[78] Ashley Sharp was awarded goal of the year for a long-run, multiple-bounce goal.[79]

Current squad

Senior list Rookie list Coaching staff

Head coach

Assistant coaches

  • (c) Captain(s)
  • (vc) Vice-captain(s)
  • Injury list
  • (i) Inactive list

Updated: 18 January 2024
Source(s): Playing list, Coaches

Season summaries

  Home and away Finals Coach Captain Best and fairest
Year P W D L % Rank P W L Rank
2023 10 4 0 6 71.9 13/18 - - - 13/18 Lisa Webb Hayley Miller Ange Stannett
2022 (S7) 10 3 1 6 66.8 12/18 - - - 12/18 Trent Cooper Hayley Miller Kiara Bowers
2022 (S6) 10 7 0 3 134.9 5/14 2 1 1 4/14 Trent Cooper Hayley Miller Hayley Miller
2021 9 6 0 3 185.1 5/14 1 0 1 5/14 Trent Cooper Kara Antonio Kiara Bowers
2020 6 6 0 0 154.7 1/14 1 1 0 1/14† Trent Cooper Kara Antonio Kiara Bowers
2019 7 6 0 1 141.2 2/10 1 0 1 3/10 Trent Cooper Kara Donnellan Kiara Bowers
2018 7 3 0 4 89.8 7/8 - - - 7/8 Michelle Cowan Kara Donnellan Ebony Antonio
2017 7 1 1 5 64.1 7/8 - - - 7/8 Michelle Cowan Kara Donnellan Dana Hooker
Total/Avg 66 36 2 28 - 5 2 3
Overall 71 38 2 31 -
P = Played, W = Win, D = Draw, L = Loss, % = Score for/Score against.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the finals series was cancelled after the first week, with no premiership awarded.[80]

Source: AFLW History


The Doig Medal is the Fremantle Football Club's annual fairest and best award. Currently, the Fremantle coaching staff give every player votes on a 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 basis after every match, including Finals Series matches. Top votes are awarded for what is regarded as an elite performance. At the end of the year the votes are tallied and the Doig Medal Night is held to announce the winner. Variations on the voting system have been used in past years. The awards ceremony has been held at the Fremantle Passenger Terminal (1995), Challenge Stadium (1998–1999), Fremantle Oval (2000–2001), the Grand Ballroom at Burswood Entertainment Complex (2002–2005, 2008–current) and the Perth Convention Exhibition Centre (2006–2007).

The Beacon Award is presented to the club's best first year player. Mature aged recruits Michael Barlow, Tendai Mzungu and Lee Spurr have won in recent years, despite being significantly older than most first year players.

Season Doig Medal winner Beacon Award winner Best clubman Players' award Leading goalkicker
1995 Peter Mann Scott Chisholm Peter Mann (33)
1996 Stephen O'Reilly Gavin Mitchell Kingsley Hunter (33)
1997 Dale Kickett Mark Gale Kingsley Hunter (32)
1998 Jason Norrish Brad Dodd Chris Bond / Jason Norrish Clive Waterhouse (30)
1999 Adrian Fletcher Clem Michael Ashley Prescott Tony Modra (71)
2000 Troy Cook Paul Hasleby Dale Kickett / John Rankin Clive Waterhouse (53)
2001 Peter Bell Dion Woods Leigh Brown Justin Longmuir and Matthew Pavlich (28)
2002 Matthew Pavlich Paul Medhurst Shaun McManus Trent Croad (42)
2003 Peter Bell Graham Polak Troy Longmuir Paul Medhurst (50)
2004 Peter Bell Andrew Browne Matthew Carr Paul Medhurst (41)
2005 Matthew Pavlich David Mundy Troy Cook Matthew Pavlich (61)
2006 Matthew Pavlich Marcus Drum Luke Webster Matthew Pavlich (71)
2007 Matthew Pavlich Robert Warnock Heath Black Matthew Pavlich (72)
2008 Matthew Pavlich Rhys Palmer Luke Webster Matthew Pavlich (67)
2009 Aaron Sandilands Stephen Hill Michael Johnson Matthew Pavlich (28)
2010 David Mundy[81] Michael Barlow Matthew de Boer Matthew Pavlich (61)
2011 Matthew Pavlich[82] Tendai Mzungu Matthew de Boer Chris Mayne / Kepler Bradley (25)
2012 Ryan Crowley[83] Lee Spurr Tendai Mzungu Chris Mayne Matthew Pavlich (69)
2013 Nat Fyfe[84] Cameron Sutcliffe Lee Spurr Ryan Crowley Michael Walters (46)
2014 Nat Fyfe[85] Matt Taberner Alex Silvagni Nat Fyfe Hayden Ballantyne (49)
2015 Aaron Sandilands[86] Alex Pearce Jonathon Griffin Nat Fyfe Michael Walters (44)
2016 Lachie Neale[87] Lachie Weller Aaron Sandilands Lachie Neale Michael Walters (36)
2017 Bradley Hill[88] Luke Ryan Zac Dawson Nat Fyfe Cam McCarthy (25)
2018 Lachie Neale[89] Brennan Cox Aaron Sandilands Ed Langdon Michael Walters (22)
2019 Nat Fyfe[90] Sam Switkowski Aaron Sandilands Nat Fyfe Michael Walters (40)
2020 Luke Ryan Caleb Serong Alex Pearce Ethan Hughes Matt Taberner (29)
2021 Sean Darcy Hayden Young Caleb Serong / David Mundy Lachie Schultz Matt Taberner (37)
2022 Andrew Brayshaw Brandon Walker Sam Switkowski Rory Lobb (36)
2023 Caleb Serong Jye Amiss Josh Corbett Jye Amiss (41)

AFL Women's Awards

Season Fairest and best Best first year player Best clubwoman Players' award Leading goalkicker
2017 Dana Hooker[91] Amy Lavell[92] Kara Antonio Kara Antonio/Ashley Sharp (4)
2018 Ebony Antonio[93] Lisa Webb Ebony Antonio Amy Lavell (6)
2019 Kiara Bowers[94] Philipa Seth Evangeline Gooch Kiara Bowers Gemma Houghton (9)
2020 Kiara Bowers[95] Mim Strom Kara Antonio Kiara Bowers Sabreena Duffy (12)
2021 Kiara Bowers Sarah Verrier Ange Stannett Kiara Bowers Gemma Houghton (15)
2022 (S6) Hayley Miller Jessica Low Ange Stannett Ange Stannett Ebony Antonio & Hayley Miller (10)
2022 (S7) Kiara Bowers Orlagh Lally Ange Stannett Kiara Bowers Aine Tighe (11)
2023[96] Ange Stannett Jae Flynn Ange Stannett Ange Stannett Aine Tighe (9)


Individual awards and records

A banner at Subiaco Oval celebrating the 200th game of Hall of Fame inductee Peter Bell
Two-time Brownlow Medallist Nat Fyfe

Attendance records

Fremantle Football Hall of Legends

The Fremantle Football Hall of Legends was inaugurated by Fremantle Football Club in 1995, in recognition of the new AFL team's links with its home city's football heritage. The inductees are nominated by the two clubs from the Fremantle area in the WAFL: East Fremantle and South Fremantle. In time, players who represented Fremantle in the AFL will join their predecessors in this prestigious Hall.

Fremantle's 25 Since '95

In 2019, The West Australian named Fremantle's greatest team of the past twenty five years as part of the club's twenty fifth anniversary celebrations, as voted by Fans and club officials.:[102]

Backs: Roger Hayden Shane Parker Antoni Grover
Half Backs: Michael Johnson Luke McPharlin Dale Kickett
Centres: Stephen Hill David Mundy Shaun McManus
Half Forwards: Michael Walters Matthew Pavlich Clive Waterhouse
Forwards: Jeff Farmer Tony Modra Hayden Ballantyne
Ruck: Aaron Sandilands Nat Fyfe Peter Bell
Interchange: Paul Hasleby Lachie Neale Troy Cook
Michael Barlow Ryan Crowley Justin Longmuir
Ben Allan


Number-one ticket holders

Tame Impala frontman Kevin Parker, the club's current number-one ticket holder

It is traditional for each AFL club to recognise a prominent supporter as the number-one ticket holder. Fremantle originally chose to award this to Carmen Lawrence, the sitting member for the federal seat of Fremantle. This was roundly criticised as the member may or may not be a supporter of the club and unnecessarily linked politics with sport.[103] The policy was soon changed to select a well-known Fremantle identity for a two-year period.

On 23 April 2010, Eskimo Joe were announced as Fremantle's number-one ticket holder, replacing golfer Nick O'Hern.[104] The band's drummer and guitarist, Joel Quartermain, hinted that they might write a new theme song for the club, saying that

We'll give it a crack. We're back here this winter writing our new record so, while we're at it, we may as well knock off a new theme song.

— Joel Quartemain[104]

In 2011, Eskimo Joe submitted their proposed song for a fan vote, although it ultimately lost to "Freo Way To Go", a variant of the club's original song.

Year Number 1 ticket holder
1995–1996 Carmen Lawrence
1997–2002 Jack Sheedy and Steve Marsh
2003–2005 Rove McManus
2006–2007 Luc Longley
2008 Jesse Dart (number-one junior ticket holder)[105]
2009 Nick O'Hern[106]
2010–2011 Eskimo Joe[104]
2012–2015 Ben Roberts-Smith[107]
2016–2021 Richard Walley[108]
2021– Kevin Parker[109]

Other high-profile fans include current and former Premiers of Western Australia, Mark McGowan[110] and Alan Carpenter,[111] former Federal Minister of Defence, Stephen Smith,[112] Tim Minchin,[113] members of psychedelic rock band Tame Impala,[114] author Tim Winton,[115] American tennis player John Isner[116] and journalists and television presenters Dixie Marshall, Simon Reeve,[117] Min Woo Lee,[118] and Matt Price, who wrote a book on Fremantle, Way to Go.

Membership base

Supporters cheer on the Dockers

Despite a relative lack of on-field success, Fremantle has recorded membership figures above average for the league. The club in 2004 had the fastest-growing membership in the AFL competition, at more than 27% from the previous year, with home crowds growing at a similar rate.[citation needed] The club's recent membership slogans have emphasised the passion of Fremantle fans for their team.[how?][which?]

Fremantle achieved a membership of 60,000 in 2023, the first time in the club's history.[119]

Season Members Change from previous season Finishing position (after finals) Average home match crowds[120]
1995 18,456 13th 23,361
1996 19,622 Increase 1,166 (+6.32%) 13th 22,473
1997 19,949 Increase 327 (+1.67%) 12th 21,982
1998 22,186 Increase 2,237 (+11.21%) 15th 23,365
1999 24,896 Increase 2,710 (+12.21%) 15th 23,972
2000 24,925 Increase 29 (+0.12%) 12th 22,357
2001 23,898 Decrease 1,027 (−4.12%) 16th 21,258
2002 23,775 Decrease 123 (−0.51%) 13th 26,359
2003 25,347 Increase 1,572 (+6.61%) 7th 31,688
2004 32,259 Increase 6,912 (+27.27%) 9th 35,693
2005 34,124 Increase 1,865 (+5.78%) 10th 35,224
2006 35,666 Increase 1,542 (+4.52%) 4th 37,063
2007 43,343[121][122] Increase 7,677 (+21.52%) 11th 37,474
2008 43,366[123] Increase 23 (+0.05%) 14th 35,877
2009 39,206[124] Decrease 4,160 (−9.6%) 14th 33,144
2010 39,854 Increase 648 (+1.63%) 6th 37,084
2011 42,762 Increase 2,908 (+6.8%) 11th 34,394
2012 41,705 Decrease 1,057 (−2.4%) 6th 33,386
2013 44,480[125] Increase 2,775 (+6.7%) 2nd 35,015
2014 48,776[125] Increase 4,296 (+9.7%) 6th 36,215
2015 51,433[126] Increase 2,657 (+5.4%) 3rd 36,914
2016 51,889 Increase 456 (+0.89%) 16th 31,416
2017 51,254 Decrease 635 (-1.22%) 14th 32,375
2018 55,639 Increase 4,385 (+8.60%)[127] 14th 41,764
2019 51,431 Decrease 4,208 (-7.56%)[128] 13th 40,896
2020 51,577 Increase 146 (+0.28%)[129] 12th 16,215
2021 50,342 Decrease 1,235 (-2.4%)[130] 11th 30,008
2022 56,105 Increase 5,763 (11.4%)[131] 6th 40,460
2023 62,064 Increase 5,959 (10.62%)[132] 14th 41,199


From 2003 until 2011, the Fremantle Football Club had the Governors of Western Australia as its patron.



Competition Level Wins Years Won
Australian Football League Seniors 0 Nil
AFL Women's Seniors 0 Nil
Finishing positions
Australian Football League Minor premiership
(McClelland Trophy)
1 2015
Grand Finalist 1 2013
Wooden spoons 1 2001
AFL Women's Minor premiership 0 Nil
Grand Finalist 0 Nil
Wooden spoons 0 Nil

See also



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