Tasmania Football Club
Names
Full nameTFC AFL Limited[1]
Nickname(s)Devils, Tassie
Club details
Founded2 May 2023; 13 months ago (2023-05-02)
Colours
  •   Myrtle green
  •   Primrose yellow
  •   Rose red[2]
Competition
  • AFL: Senior men
  • AFLW: Senior women
  • VFL: Reserves men
ChairmanGrant O'Brien[3]
CEOBrendon Gale (2025)[4]
Ground(s)Blundstone Arena
University of Tasmania Stadium
Uniforms
Home
Other information
Official websitehttps://tasmaniafc.com/

The Tasmania Football Club, nicknamed the Devils, is a professional Australian rules football club set to compete in the Australian Football League (AFL) from the 2028 season and the AFL Women's (AFLW) from an unspecified date.[5][6] The club will be based in Tasmania, with matches to be played across the state. Both University of Tasmania Stadium in Launceston and Blundstone Arena in Hobart will host games initially, with the southern matches moving to the future Macquarie Point Stadium upon its construction.[7]

In May 2023, Tasmania secured an AFL licence following a unanimous vote of AFL club presidents.[7] The club will likely first compete in the Victorian Football League, starting in either 2025 or 2026.[8]

History

Main article: History of the Tasmanian AFL bid

Tasmania has been a stronghold of Australian rules football since the 1860s. Pictured is the 1911 Tasmanian state side from the Adelaide carnival where they beat the Western Australian state team on Adelaide Oval.

Australian rules football in Tasmania has long been the most popular sport. A 2018 study of Internet traffic showed 79% of Tasmanians (424,459) were interested in the sport, the highest rate in the country,[9] which was, according to Roy Morgan, a figure higher than the number of supporters of around half of existing AFL clubs.[10]

The idea of a Tasmanian AFL team had been suggested, and in some cases formally proposed, many times since the 1980s.[11] The successful bid was the result of an organisation known as the Tasmanian AFL Licence Taskforce assembled in 2019, chaired by Brett Godfrey, with backing from the Tasmanian Government.[12] Grant O'Brien, former CEO of Woolworths and chair of Tourism Tasmania, was appointed the new club's first chairman in July 2023 by the Tasmanian AFL Licence Taskforce.[13] In September, a board chaired by O'Brien was announced, including Kath McCann, James Henderson (AFL talent manager), Alastair Lynch, Alicia Leis, Roger Curtis, Laura McBain, Graeme Gardner and Kathy Schaefer.[14] Former Richmond player Jack Riewoldt was appointed club culture manager.[14]

On 18 March 2024, the club was officially launched with the name Tasmania Devils, using myrtle green, rose red and primrose yellow as their club colours; the colours and guernsey were based on those of the historical Tasmanian interstate representative team, featuring a red "T" on a yellow map of Tasmania.[15] Devils was the club's chosen nickname, based on the local Tasmanian devil marsupial; the nickname had previously been used by the state's VFL and Talent League clubs. The nickname was confirmed only after negotiations with Warner Bros., whose cartoon character Tasmanian Devil meant that it held a trademark on the name.[16][17]

On 10 May 2024 Richmond Football Club CEO Brendon Gale announced that he will be leaving the club at the end of the 2024 season and will become the inaugural CEO for the new club commencing early 2025. [18]

Corporate

During the 2024 launch, the club commenced selling foundation membership packs for between A$10 and $15 with an initial target of 40,000 by October (one of the original conditions of entry set by the AFL). The club exceeded this target within 2 hours and had sold over 121,000 memberships just two days after launch,[19] giving it the highest on-paper membership of any club in the AFL and taking just 24 hours to break the league's all-time membership record.[20]

References

  1. ^ "Terms and Conditions". Tasmania Football Club. 21 March 2024.
  2. ^ "Presenting the @FC_Tasmania colours!". Twitter. AFL.
  3. ^ Ex-Woolies boss lands AFL job from The Mercury 5 July 2023
  4. ^ https://www.afl.com.au/news/1125841 10 May 2024
  5. ^ "Full statement: Tasmania awarded 19th AFL licence". AFL.com.au. 3 May 2023. Retrieved 3 May 2023.
  6. ^ "Prime Minister Anthony Albanese pledges $240 million for Hobart stadium at Macquarie Point". ABC News. 29 April 2023. Retrieved 3 May 2023.
  7. ^ a b "AFL presidents approve Tasmania for 19th team licence after decades of campaigning". ABC News. 2 May 2023. Retrieved 3 May 2023.
  8. ^ "Tasmania granted 19th AFL team licence with 2028 slated for men's start date". The Guardian. 3 May 2023.
  9. ^ Devils in the detail: an economist argues the case for a Tasmanian AFL team – and new stadium by Tim Harcourt for the Conversation 1 May 2023
  10. ^ AFL supporter bases Roy Morgen August 17, 2018
  11. ^ "Tasmania's current push for an AFL licence isn't its first, but it may well be the last". ABC News. 2 September 2022. Retrieved 3 May 2023.
  12. ^ "Inside the rise of Tassie: Locals thought Gillon McLachlan wanted to move Roos, but now 19th team a reality". Herald Sun. 30 April 2023. Retrieved 3 May 2023.
  13. ^ Ex-Woolies boss lands AFL job from The Mercury 5 July 2023
  14. ^ a b Board to lead Tasmania's AFL club announced, along with culture lead Jack Riewoldt by Chris Rowbottom for ABC News 13 September 2023
  15. ^ "Celebration as new Tassie logo, jumper and colours revealed". AFL.
  16. ^ "AFL's new Tasmania side to be called the Tasmanian Devils". Herald Sun.
  17. ^ "Tasmania Devils AFL club launched with name, colours, logo and guernsey concept revealed". ABC News.
  18. ^ https://www.afl.com.au/news/1125841 10 May 2024
  19. ^ ‘Overwhelming’ take-up of Tasmania Devils AFL memberships passes 120,000 by Jack Snape 20 March 2024
  20. ^ ‘Blow your mind’: Tasmania Devils break AFL membership record in 24 hours by Matthew Sullivan from News.com.au 20 March 2024