The club, originally founded in 1874, was known as the South Melbourne Football Club until it relocated to Sydney in 1982 to become the Sydney Swans. Sydney is the only AFL club based in New South Wales, and was also the first non-Victorian club in the competition.
The club has won premierships in 1909, 1918 and 1933 (as South Melbourne), and in 2005 (as the Sydney Swans).
Sydney played in the 2006 Grand Final, but was defeated by the West Coast Eagles for the premiership title, losing by one point - the closest Grand Final result since a draw in 1977 . The previous year, the Swans narrowly defeated the Eagles in the 2005 Grand Final by 4 points in an epic low scoring encounter. The 2005 Grand Final victory ended a 72 year premiership drought; at that time, the longest for a club in VFL/AFL history.
The inauguration date of the club is officially June 19 1874, but it only adopted the title South Melbourne Football Club four weeks later, on July 15. The club represented the Melbourne suburb of South Melbourne, one of the city's oldest.
In 1880 it absorbed the Albert Park club (one of the VFA's foundation senior clubs), and by 1890 it had replaced the original blue and white with the now familiar red and white of the South Melbourne coat of arms.
Nicknamed “Southerners”, the team were more colorfully known as the “Bloods" , in reference to the bright red sash on their white jumpers (the sash was replaced with the current red “V” in 1932). The colorful epithet the “Bloodstained Angels” was also in use. The “Bloodstained Angels” epithet proved prophetic when South Melbourne played in the 1945 "Bloodbath" Grand Final against Carlton, a game legendary for its brutal violence which saw many of the Swans' players jumpers stained with their own or the opposition’s blood (from the book "The Blood Stained Angels", a history of the South Melbourne Football Club). The 1945 Grand Final saw 10 players reported and suspended for a total of 69 games. The club was based at Lake Oval, also home of the South Melbourne Cricket Club.
At the end of the 1896 season, Collingwood and South Melbourne finished exactly equal in all respects at the top of the VFA's premiership ladder. This was the first time this had occurred in VFA history. The VFA determined that an elimination match should take place to decide the season's premiership on October 3, 1896 at the East Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Collingwood won the match, six goals to five, in front of an estimated crowd of 29,000. Even though this victory brought Collingwood a premiership, it is uncertain whether the match itself was promoted as a "Premiership Match" or as a "Grand Final" at the time.
This Grand Final would be the last match South Melbourne would play in the VFA, as the following season they would be one of eight founding clubs forming the breakaway Victorian Football League. The other clubs were St Kilda Football Club, Essendon Football Club, Fitzroy Football Club, Melbourne Football Club, Geelong Football Club, Carlton Football Club and Collingwood Football Club.
After several years with only limited success, South Melbourne next reached the grand final in 1945. The match, played against Carlton, was to become known as "the Bloodbath", courtesy of the brawl that overshadowed the match, with a total of 9 players being reported by the umpires. Carlton won the match by 28 points, and from then on, South Melbourne struggled.
Under the legendary Norm Smith, South Melbourne finally improved substantially in 1970 with a fourth place. However, having probably the worst country zone in the league and a poor metropolitan zone meant South Melbourne still possessed not the slightest access to the best emerging players, and their 1970 joy was short-lived. Between Round 7, 1972 and Round 13, 1973, they lost 29 consecutive games. There was a brief glimmer of hope when South Melbourne made the finals in 1977 finishing 5th under coach Ian Stewart, but losing the Elimination final at VFL Park to Richmond Football Club by 34 points. The same year Graeme Teasdale, who had moved from full-forward to the ruck won the Brownlow Medal. By the end of the 1970s South Melbourne had massive debts after struggling for so long and, despite strong supporter opposition, in the early 1980s they were given the "choice" by the VFL of relocation to Sydney or oblivion.
The move to Sydney is the subject of the Weddings Parties Anything song 'The Swans Return'.
On 31 July 1985, for what was thought to be $6.3 million, Dr. Geoffrey Edelsten "bought" the Swans. In reality it was $2.9 million in cash with funding and other payments spread over five years. Edelsten resigned as chairman in less than twelve months, but had already made his mark. He immediately snapped up former Geelong coach Tom Hafey. Hafey, in turn, used his knowledge of Geelong’s contracts to snap up David Bolton, Bernard Toohey and Greg Williams, who would all form a key part of the Sydney side, at a league-determined total fee of $240,000 (less than the $500,000 Geelong demanded, and even the $300,000 Sydney offered). The likes of Gerard Healy, Merv Neagle and Paul Morwood were also poached from other clubs, and failed approaches were made to Simon Madden, Terry Daniher, Andrew Bews and Maurice Rioli.
During the Edelsten years, the Swans were seen by the Sydney public as a flamboyant club, typified by the style of its spearhead, Warwick Capper, his long bright blond mullet and bright pink boots made him unmissable on the field and his pink ferrari, penchant for fashion models and eccentricity made him notorious off the field - all somewhat fashionable in the 1980s. During Capper's peak years, the Swans had made successive finals appearances for the first time since relocating. His consistently spectacular aerial exploits earned him consecutive Mark of the Year awards while his goalkicking efforts (amassing 103 goals in 1987) made him runner up in the Coleman Medal two years running. The Swans' successive finals appearances saw crowds during this time peak at an average of around 25,000 per game. Edelsten also introduced the 'Swanettes', a cheerleading group that were unique for an AFL club. The Swanettes did not get much performance time, owing to the short intervals between quarters of play in the AFL and the lack of space in which they might perform while other activities take place on the field. The Swanettes were soon discontinued, and no AFL club has had cheerleaders since then.
In 1987, the Swans scored 201 points against the West Coast Eagles, and the following week scored 236 points against the Essendon Football Club. Both games were at the SCG. The Swans are the only team to have scored two double-tons (200-plus scores) in a row.
By 1988 the licence was sold back to the VFL for ten dollars. Losses were in the millions. A group of financial backers including Mike Willessee, Basil Sellers, Peter Weinert and Craig Kimberley purchased the licence and bankrolled the club until 1993, when the AFL stepped in.
Morale at the side plummeted as players were asked to take pay cuts. Legendary coach Tom Hafey was sacked by the club in 1988 after a player-led rebellion at his tough training methods (unusual in the semi-professional days of that era).
Capper was sold to the Brisbane Bears for $400,000 in a desperate attempt to improve the club’s finances. Instead, it only led to disastrous on-field performances. Instead of a 100-goal-a-season forward, Sydney’s goalkicking was led by defender Bernard Toohey with 29 in 1989, then Jim West with 34 in 1990. Players left the club in droves, including Brownlow Medalist Greg Williams, Bernard Toohey and Barry Mitchell. The careers of stars such as Dennis Carroll, David Bolton, Tony Morwood and David Murphy came to an end, while promising young players like Jamie Lawson, Robert Teal and Paul Bryce had their careers cut short by injury.
Attendances consistently dropped below 10,000 when the team performed poorly between 1990 and 1994. The side finished last on the ladder in 1992, 1993 and 1994.
The AFL began to step in to save the Swans, offering substantial monetary and management support. The club survived, despite strong rumours in 1992 that it would merge with the Brisbane Bears or fold altogether. With draft and salary cap concessions in the early 1990s and a series of notable recruits, the team fielded a competitive team after the early part of the decade. During this time, the side was largely held together by two inspirational skippers, both from the Wagga Wagga region of country New South Wales, Dennis Carroll and later the courageous captain Paul Kelly.
Desperate to hang on, the club was keen to enlist the biggest names and identities in the AFL, and recruited legendary coach Ron Barassi who helped save the club from extinction while serving them as coach from Round 7, 1993 to 1995. At roughly the same time, Hawthorn legend Dermott Brereton was also recruited, albeit with little on-field impact.
A big coup for the club was recruitment of St Kilda Football Club champion Tony "Plugger" Lockett in 1995. Lockett became a cult figure in Sydney, with an instant impact and along with the Super League war in the rival rugby league football code in Australia, helped the Swans to pull in larger crowds.
1995 would be Barassi's last year in charge. The Swans won 8 games- as much as they did in the previous three years combined- and finished with a percentage of over 100 (in fact, they have managed such consistently ever since). They were also one of only two teams to defeat the all-conquering Carlton side of that year. Barassi left an improving team, a club in a much better state than he found them.
Since 1996, the Swans have made the finals in each season except 2000 and 2002. By 1997, the average for home ground attendances had peaked at 36,612.
Former Swans favourite son Paul Roos was appointed coach part-way through the 2002 season after it became obvious that Rodney Eade was not performing as coach. Roos had an immediate impact, winning most of the remaining games that year, and continuing a record as a successful coach with the Swans for over half a decade.
A new home ground in ANZ Stadium (then known as Telstra Stadium) provided increased capacity over the SCG. The Swans' first game played at the Stadium in round 9, 2002 attracted 54,169 spectators. The Sydney Swans v Collingwood match on August 23, 2003 set an attendance record for the largest crowd to watch an AFL game outside of Victoria with an official attendance of 72,393 and was the largest home and away AFL crowd at any stadium for 2003. A preliminary final against the Brisbane Lions in 2003 attracted 71,019 people.
Sydney was able to recruit another St Kilda export in the Lockett mould, Barry Hall. Though there were obvious parallels to the signing of Lockett (a powerful, tough forward from St Kilda with questions over his discipline and attitude) which left Hall with much to live up to, he flourished in the new surrounds and eventually became a cult figure and club leader in his own right.
When the then-Telstra Stadium was unavailable for the 2005 semi final, the game against Geelong drew a crowd of 39,079 at the SCG. The record crowd for an AFL fixture at that venue is 46,168 in 1997 also against Geelong.
The culmination of the recent success is the 2005 premiership against the West Coast Eagles played in front of 91,898 at the MCG taking the flag to Sydney for the first time and breaking a 72 year drought for the club. It also broke the longest premiership drought in the history of the competition.
Partly as a result of the exclusive marketshare, crowds at home games tend to be larger on average than those drawn by the nine National Rugby League clubs in Sydney, despite the fact that rugby league is well established as Sydney's most popular football code.
Over the history of the AFL, the Swans have been one of the most innovative clubs in the VFL/AFL in finding new markets. In recent years, the club has invested time and energy in the US market (with the help of coach Paul Roos). In 2006 as part of Australia Week celebrations in the USA, the Sydney Swans were beaten by the Kangaroos Football Club in an exhibition match at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). The club formed affiliation agreements with the Los Angeles Swans and the Chicago Swans in the USAFL.
|2005 Toyota AFL Grand Final||G||B||Total|
|Venue: Melbourne Cricket Ground||Crowd: 91,898|
In 2005 the Swans came under enormous public scrutiny, even from AFL commissioner Andrew Demetriou for their unorthodox, "boring" defense-oriented tactics that included tightly controlling the tempo of the game and starving the opposition of possession (in fact, seven teams that season had their lowest possession total whilst playing against the Swans). The coach Paul Roos maintained that playing contested football was the style used by all recent premiership winning teams, and felt that it was ironic that the much criticised strategy proved ultimately successful.
On Friday, 30 September 2005 a ticker tape parade down Sydney's George Street was held in honour of the Swans' achievements, which ended with a rally at Town Hall, where Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore presented the team with the key to the city. The flag of the Swans also flew on top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge during the week; the same flag was later given to WA premier Geoff Gallop to fly on top of the state legislature in Perth as part of the friendly wager between Gallop and NSW premier Morris Iemma.
The Swans started 2006 quietly with multiple pre-season losses and poor performances early in the home and away season. The media diagnosed a "premiership hangover". Despite this, they finished the season strongly in 4th place, obtaining a double chance in the finals and a home Preliminary Final berth after a strong one-point victory over the West Coast Eagles at Subiaco Oval in Perth. In the Preliminary Final, the Swans defeated Fremantle by a considerable margin at Telstra Stadium.
|2006 Toyota AFL Grand Final||G||B||Total|
|Venue: Melbourne Cricket Ground||Crowd: 97, 431|
The 2006 AFL Grand Final was contested between the Sydney Swans and West Coast Eagles at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on September 30, 2006. The West Coast Eagles avenged their 2005 Grand Final defeat by beating the Sydney Swans by one point, only the fourth one-point Grand Final margin in the competition's history.
The rivalry between the Sydney Swans and West Coast Eagles has become one of the greatest rivalries in VFL/AFL history. The six games between the two sides (from the start of the 2005 finals to the 2006 Grand Final inclusive) were decided by a combined margin of 13 points. Four of those six games were finals.
The Swans field a reserves side in the ACT competition in the Premier Division where out of form Swans players play. They have been dominant in the ACT competition, winning the 2007 premiership and being undefeated since they lost in the 2004 preliminary final versus Queanbeyan, until round 1 2008 where they lost again to Queanbeyan. The Swans have signed another agreement to stay in the Premier Division and they acknowledged that their dominance in the past three seasons was "unhealthy" In 2007, Swans player Jarred Moore won the Mulrooney Medal, which is the ACT equivalent of the Brownlow Medal.
Round 2 Richmond 11.6(72) lost to Sydney 13.10(88)
Round 3 Sydney 13.18(96) defeated Brisbane Lions 10.9(69)
Round 4 Adelaide 9.7(61) defeated Sydney 5.14(44) Sydney had 4 more shots than Adelaide, but their inaccuracy proved costly
Round 5 Sydney 17.7(109) defeated Melbourne 8.12(60)
Round 6 Kangaroos 16.15(111) defeated Sydney 14.11(95)
Round 7 St.Kilda 15.7(97) defeated Sydney 11.5 (71)
Round 8 Sydney 17.16(118) defeated Port Adelaide 13.9(87) Sydney inflicted Port with its second defeat for the season, ending its best start to a season
Round 9 Western Bulldogs 8.9(57) lost to Sydney 15.10(100)
Round 10 Sydney Swans 11.7(73) lost to Essendon 11.8(74)
Round 11 Hawthorn 9.12(66) lost to Sydney 11.9(75)
Round 12 Sydney 8.9(57) lost to Collingwood 11.10(76) This was labelled as the Swans worst performance in 5 years by coach Paul Roos. The Swans had only kicked 3 goals to 3/4 time, and only a few "junk-time" goals regained some scoreboard respectability
Round 13 Geelong 13.9(87) defeated Sydney 10.9(69)
Round 14 Sydney 11.23(89) defeated Fremantle 9.7(61)
Round 15 Sydney 25.12(162) defeated Carlton 15.10(100)
Round 16 West Coast 16.16(112) defeated Sydney 15.10(100) This game differed from the previous contests between these two teams. For the first time since 2005, the winning margin was greater than a goal. Also the scoring was much heavier. Rather than the traditional "Battle of attrition" which these two teams are known for, this game was much more attacking.
Round 17 Sydney 21.12(138) defeated Richmond 10.12(72)
Round 18 Melbourne 9.10(64) lost to Sydney 17.10(112)
Round 19 Sydney 12.10(82) defeated St.Kilda 9.11(65)
Round 20 Brisbane Lions 9.9(63) drew with Sydney 8.15(63) This was Sydney's first draw since 2002.
Round 21 Collingwood 15.11(101) defeated Sydney 11.10(76)
Round 22 Sydney 22.9(141) defeated Hawthorn 10.9(69)
Sydney finished the regular season in 7th spot, and advanced to the finals stage, where they would meet Collingwood at the MCG in an elimination final.
Elimination Final Collingwood 18.17(125) defeated Sydney 13.9(87) Sydney were outplayed most of the night by a committed Collingwood Side. Beside from a period before half time, when Sydney kicked 4 unanswered goals, Collingwood were always in control. By Quarter time, Collingwood were out to a 31 point lead. That lead would be cut to just 5 points 2 minutes into the third quarter, but after that, Collingwood ran out convincing winners by 38 points
This was Sydney's earliest exit since 2002, when they failed to make the finals. The season was seen as somewhat a disappointment, as only victories against lesser teams saw them through to a 5th consecutive finals campaign. Within the 2007 trade week for the 2008 season premiership winning players such as Jude Bolton, Amon Buchanan and other key players were placed to be traded leading to changes for the Swans 2008 season.
The conclusion of the 2007 trade saw the loss of Adam Schneider and Sean Dempster to St Kilda, the delisting of Simon Phillips, Jonathan Simpkin and Luke Vogels, and the gain of Henry Playfair from Geelong and Martin Mattner from Adelaide.
Some famous fans include movie star Nicole Kidman, singers Shannon Noll, Delta Goodrem, Australian band Human Nature, radio personality Adam Spencer, television personality Ian "Dicko" Dickson, media personalities Sandra Sully, Neil Cordy and former cricket legend Glenn McGrath, amongst others.
|Year||Members||Finishing position²||Average Home crowd|
|1997||22,109||7th, qualifying finalists||36,612|
|1999||31,175||8th, qualifying finalists||30,586|
|2001||28,022||7th, elimination finalists||27,556|
|2003||21,270||3rd, preliminary finalists||32,244|
|2007||32,500¹||7th, elimination finalists||35,632¹|
The Swans developed arguably their most famous modern rivalry against the Perth based West Coast Eagles between 2005 and 2007. Six consecutive games between the two teams (that is, from the 2005 Qualifying Final to the Round 1 match of 2007) were each been decided by less than a goal, resulting in two wins to Sydney and 4 to West Coast (including a Grand Final win each). The difference in aggregate across the six games was three points and the sum of the margins was thirteen points.
In 2005, Sydney lost the Qualifying Final to the Eagles by four points, only to later win the Grand Final by four points against the Eagles. In 2006, the Eagles lost the Qualifying Final to Sydney by one point, only to later win the Grand Final by one point against the Swans. Strangely, the total scores in those two games were also the same, but reversed - 85 d 84.
Below are the results of recent clashes between these rivals:
2005 Qualifying Final, Subiaco
2005 Grand Final, MCG
2006 Round 15, Subiaco
2006 Qualifying Final, Subiaco
2006 Grand Final, MCG
2007, Round 1, Telstra Stadium
This trend was broken when the teams clashed again in Round 16 of 2007. The Eagles won the game 112-100, a margin almost as high as the combined total margins of the previous 6 contests between the two teams, however the score was tied at half-time, with no team in front by more than a few goals all night.
Round 4 2008 saw Sydney 16.11 (107) beat West Coast 5.15 (45) at ANZ Stadium. Although this game wasn't the traditional low scoring heart stopper (Sydney won by 62 points, its biggest win over the Eagles since 2000), it did have its fair share of controversy. Swans player, Barry Hall KO'ed West Coast's Brent Staker, which made headlines worldwide. However in round 11 another epic took place at Subiaco Oval with a thrilling 5 point win to the Swans, Sydney 12.11 (83) beating West Coast 11.12 (78), with Jude Bolton kicking the winning goal with just 90 seconds left.
Overall of the 39 games played between the two teams Sydney have won 20, lost 19 and drawn 0.
In recent years, the Swans have dominated the Brisbane Lions, even during the Lions halycon years. Since 2003, the Swans have won 9 of 12 games against the Lions, plus a draw in 2007. The result of the most recent match fought out between these teams (Round 22, 2008) was a 61 point win to the Swans.
The trading of Adam Schneider and Sean Dempster, as well as the team now being coached by the former assistant coach at Sydney, Ross Lyon, have lead to a much stronger rivalry between the clubs, with matches being dubbed "Ross versus Roos" by many commentators. For the record, both coaches are at 2-2 apiece in terms of head-to-head as of June 15, 2008. Sydney won the most recent clash by 35 points in what could be a season defining win for the 2005 premiers as they bid to win a second premiership in just four years.
The unfounded claims by St Kilda CEO Archie Fraser against Craig Bolton suggesting Bolton had "tunneled" against star forward Nick Riewoldt, has led to outrage amongst Swans fans, and has also increased the rivalry between the two clubs.
A recent clash ended in a controversial draw, Sydney 8.16.(64) - Nth Melbourne 9.10.(64). Brett Kirk thought that he'd kicked the winning goal with over a minute remaining but the ball was touched on the line by North's Michael Firrito, ensuring a draw. Had the ball not been touched the Swans would have won by 5 points. Although Sydney had an extra player, Jesse White, on the field who wasn't directly involved in the play. The Swans have now not beaten the Kangaroos in Melbourne for more than 10 years.
|Year||Posn||Coach||Captain||Best & Fairest||Leading goalkicker (goals)|
|1933||1||Jack Bissett||Jack Bissett||Harry Clarke||Bob Pratt (109)|
|1934||2||Jack Bissett||Jack Bissett||Terry Brain||Bob Pratt (150)|
|1935||2||Jack Bissett||Jack Bissett||Ron Hillis||Bob Pratt (103)|
|1936||2||Jack Bissett||Jack Bissett||Herbie Matthews||Bob Pratt (64)|
|1937||9||Roy Cazaly||Laurie Nash||Herbie Matthews||Laurie Nash (37)|
|1938||12||Roy Cazaly||Herbie Matthews||Len Thomas||Bob Moore (34)|
|1939||12||Herbie Matthews||Herbie Matthews||Herbie Matthews||Bob Pratt (72)|
|1940||10||Herbie Matthews||Herbie Matthews||Herbie Matthews||Len Reiffel (33)|
|1941||8||Joe Kelly||Herbie Matthews||Reg Ritchie||Jack Graham (33)|
|1942||3||Joe Kelly||Herbie Matthews||Jim Cleary||Lindsay White (80)|
|1943||8||Joe Kelly||Herbie Matthews||Herbie Matthews||Claude Culph (35)|
|1944||7||Joe Kelly||Herbie Matthews||Jim Cleary||Ron Hartridge (31)|
|1945||2||William Adams||Herbie Matthews||Jack Graham||Laurie Nash (56)|
|1946||7||William Adams||Jack Graham||Bill Williams||Henry Mears (32)|
|1947||8||William Adams||Jack Graham||Bill Williams||Bill Williams (38)|
|1948||10||William Adams, Jack Hale||Jack Graham||Ron Clegg||Jack Graham (32)|
|1949||10||Jack Hale||Bert Lucas||Ron Clegg||Ray Jones (27)|
|1950||11||Gordon Lane||Gordon Lane||Bill Williams||Gordon Lane (47)|
|1951||8||Gordon Lane||Gordon Lane||Ron Clegg||Bill Williams (41)|
|1952||5||Gordon Lane||Gordon Lane||Keith Schaefer||Gordon Lane (33)|
|1953||8||Laurie Nash||Ron Clegg||Jim Taylor||Ian Gillett (34)|
|1954||10||Herbie Matthews||Ron Clegg||Eddie Lane||Eddie Lane (28)|
|1955||10||Herbie Matthews||Bill Gunn||Ian Gillett||Eddie Lane (36)|
|1956||9||Herbie Matthews||Ian Gillett||Jim Dorgan||Bill Gunn (28)|
|1957||10||Herbie Matthews||Ron Clegg||Jim Taylor||Fred Goldsmith (43)|
|1958||9||Ron Clegg||Ron Clegg||Bob Skilton||Max Oaten (34)|
|1959||9||Ron Clegg||Ron Clegg||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton (60)|
|1960||8||Bill Faul||Ron Clegg||Frank Johnson||Max Oaten (39)|
|1961||11||Bill Faul||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||Brian McGowan (38)|
|1962||12||Noel McMahen||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton (36)|
|1963||11||Noel McMahen||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton (36)|
|1964||11||Noel McMahen||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||Max Papley (25)|
|1965||8||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||Ron Kingston (48)|
|1966||8||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||Max Papley||Austin Robertson, Jr. (60)|
|1967||9||Allan Miller||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||John Sudholz (35)|
|1968||9||Allan Miller||Bob Skilton||Bob Skilton||John Sudholz (36)|
|1969||9||Norm Smith||Bob Skilton||Peter Bedford||John Sudholz (35)|
|1970||4||Norm Smith||Bob Skilton||Peter Bedford||John Sudholz (62)|
|1971||12||Norm Smith||Bob Skilton||Peter Bedford||Peter Bedford (44)|
|1972||11||Norm Smith||John Rantall||Russell Cook||Peter Bedford (28)|
|1973||12||Graeme John||Peter Bedford||Peter Bedford||Peter Bedford (52)|
|1974||9||Graeme John||Peter Bedford||Norm Goss||Norm Goss (37)|
|1975||12||Graeme John||Peter Bedford||Peter Bedford||Graham Teasdale (38)|
|1976||8||Ian Stewart||Peter Bedford||Rick Quade||Robert Dean (37)|
|1977||5||Ian Stewart||Rick Quade||Graham Teasdale||Graham Teasdale (38)|
|1978||8||Des Tuddenham||Rick Quade||John Murphy||John Murphy (31)|
|1979||10||Ian Stewart||Rick Quade||Barry Round||Tony Morwood (56)|
|1980||6||Ian Stewart||Barry Round||David Ackerly||John Roberts (67)|
|1981||9||Ian Stewart||Barry Round||Barry Round||John Roberts (51)|
|19821||7||Rick Quade||Barry Round||David Ackerly||Tony Morwood (45)|
|1983||11||Rick Quade||Barry Round||Mark Browning||Craig Braddy (48)|
|1984||10||Rick Quade, Bob Hammond||Barry Round, Mark Browning||Bernie Evans||Warwick Capper (39)|
|1985||10||John Northey||Mark Browning||Stephen Wright||Warwick Capper (45)|
|1986||4||Tom Hafey||Dennis Carroll||Gerard Healy||Warwick Capper (92)|
|1987||4||Tom Hafey||Dennis Carroll||Gerard Healy||Warwick Capper (103)|
|1988||7||Tom Hafey||Dennis Carroll||Gerard Healy||Barry Mitchell (35)|
|1989||7||Col Kinnear||Dennis Carroll||Mark Bayes||Bernard Toohey (27)|
|1990||13||Col Kinnear||Dennis Carroll||Stephen Wright||Jim West (34)|
|1991||12||Col Kinnear||Dennis Carroll||Barry Mitchell||Jason Love (52)|
|1992||15||Gary Buckenara||Dennis Carroll||Paul Kelly||Simon Minton-Connell (60)|
|1993||15||Gary Buckenara, Ron Barassi||Paul Kelly||Paul Kelly||Simon Minton-Connell (41)|
|1994||15||Ron Barassi||Paul Kelly||Daryn Creswell||Simon Minton-Connell (68)|
|1995||12||Ron Barassi||Paul Kelly||Tony Lockett||Tony Lockett (110)|
|1996||2||Rodney Eade||Paul Kelly||Paul Kelly||Tony Lockett (121)|
|1997||7||Rodney Eade||Paul Kelly||Paul Kelly||Tony Lockett (37)|
|1998||5||Rodney Eade||Paul Kelly||Michael O'Loughlin||Tony Lockett (109)|
|1999||8||Rodney Eade||Paul Kelly||Wayne Schwass||Tony Lockett (82)|
|2000||10||Rodney Eade||Paul Kelly||Andrew Schauble||Michael O'Loughlin (53)|
|2001||7||Rodney Eade||Paul Kelly||Paul Williams||Michael O'Loughlin (35)|
|2002||11||Rodney Eade, Paul Roos||Paul Kelly||Paul Williams||Barry Hall (55)|
|2003||4||Paul Roos||Stuart Maxfield||Adam Goodes||Barry Hall (64)|
|2004||5||Paul Roos||Stuart Maxfield||Barry Hall||Barry Hall (74)|
|2005||1||Paul Roos||Stuart Maxfield²||Brett Kirk||Barry Hall (80)|
|2006||2||Paul Roos||Barry Hall, Brett Kirk and Leo Barry||Adam Goodes||Barry Hall (78)|
|2007||7||Paul Roos||Barry Hall, Brett Kirk and Leo Barry||Brett Kirk||Barry Hall (44)|
|2008||Paul Roos||Brett Kirk||Jarrad McVeigh||Michael O'Laughlin ()|
1: Relocated to Sydney
²: Six rounds into the 2005 season, Stuart Maxfield ended his playing career due to chronic injury. Six players rotated as captain throughout the rest of the season: Brett Kirk (rounds 7, 8, 19 and 20), Leo Barry (rounds 9, 10, 21 and 22), Barry Hall (rounds 11, 12 and the entire finals series), Ben Mathews (rounds 13 and 14), Adam Goodes (rounds 15 and 16) and Jude Bolton (rounds 17 and 18).
The Sydney Swans are sponsored by radio station Triple M which broadcasts all of its games live. Occasionally, 702 ABC Sydney may cover Swans matches if they are played on a Saturday afternoon (when they are playing in Melbourne).
Cheer, cheer the red and the white,
Honour the name by day and by night,
Lift that noble banner high,
Shake down the thunder from the sky
Whether the odds be great or small,
Swans will go in and win overall
While her loyal sons are marching
Onwards to victory.
The actual mascot at Swans home games is still known as Cygie. (as in cygnet).