The Port Adelaide Football Club is arguably the most successful senior football club, not only in South Australia but Australia-wide.|
Since playing its
first game in 1870, the club has gone on to win an Australian record
of 36 SANFL premierships including six in a row and achieve the honour
of being Champions of Australia on four occasions.
It all began back during
April 1870 when Messrs. John A. Rann, George Ireland and R.W.J. Leicester
met on the North Parade at Port Adelaide and discussed the formation
of a sporting social club for the young men of the district, hence the
formation of the Port Adelaide Football Club.
First officials of the newly
formed club were President - Capt. John Hart (snr.), Chairman - W.E.Mattinson,
Secretary - R.W.J.Leicester, Treasurer - G.Ireland, Committee - J.A.Rann,
R.Carr, L.Bridgland and J.Wald (Captain).
An extract from the first meeting
held on 13th May 1870 read: 'Members are informed that the opening practice
will commence at 3 p.m. on Saturday 14th inst. - R.W.J.Leicester, Hon.
club played its first game on 24th May 1870 against a team known as the
Young Australians which resulted in a nil all draw on a ground that was
part of the Glanville Hall Estate owned by Captain John Hart (snr.).
The ground was referred to as 'Bucks Flat'.
From that first game until
1877 Port Adelaide wore blue and white colours, which they changed to
a rose pink cap, guernsey and socks with white knickerbockers in 1878.
further change was made in 1883 when we wore a magenta and blue cap,
guernsey and hooped socks with navy blue knickerbockers. But in 1902
someone must have come to their senses, as we changed to the famous black
and white colours.
There was no organised competition for the club to
play in until 1877 when it was a founding member of the South Australian
Football Association. It quickly established itself as a force in that
competition and went on to win its first flag in 1884. The club continued
to prove its strength and in 1914 created history by going the whole
season undefeated and in the process winning the honour of being Champions
After capturing three flags in the 1930's, with superb talent
such as dual Magarey Medallist Bob Quinn, the club would embark on its
next great era with the arrival of Fos Williams to Alberton in 1950.
He led the club to 9 premierships overall and in many ways propelled
the Club to where it is today. Port Adelaide won seven premierships in
the 50's including a SANFL record six in a row.
The tradition continued
to grow. Through great players such as four-time Magarey Medallist Russell
Ebert, Port continued its SANFL supremacy arguably peaking just before
entering the AFL. The club, coached by John Cahill, won seven out of
nine flags between 1988 and 1996, making it the obvious choice for the
second SANFL licence to join the AFL, which we were awarded in 1994.
In 1997 the Port Adelaide Football Club Ltd (Power) joined the AFL with the
Magpies continuing in the SANFL as the Port Adelaide Magpies Football Club Inc.
with both Clubs sharing the history from 1870 to 1996.
Stephen Williams was appointed coach of the
Port Adelaide Magpies when John Cahill stepped aside mid-season in 1996
to concentrate solely on his job as inaugural coach of the AFL affiliate.
In keeping with tradition, Steven guided the club to three more premierships
before announcing his resignation at the end of the 2003 season. In 2003
Brett Ebert created history by becoming the first son of a Magarey Medallist
to also claim the coveted award.
2005 saw club legend John Cahill return to coach the Magpies for 1 year,
leading the Club to finish in 3rd position and really set the Club up for
an exciting and successful future once again. Recruit Jeremy Clayton dominated
the competition until a devastating injury (ruptured spleen) in the Qualifying
Final victory over the Eagles ended his season and meant that he had to watch
from his hospital bed as he took out the 2005 Magarey Medal.
In 2006 Tim Ginever, who was Cahill’s assistant in 2005, took over the reigns
as senior coach together with the appointment of Mark Clayton as the new Club Captain.
In 2006 the Club finished a disappointing 5th.