Richmond Football Club

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The Richmond Football Club, nicknamed The Tigers, is an Australian rules football club that competes in the Australian Football League. Richmond shares healthy rivalries with Carlton, Collingwood and Essendon. After winning five premierships between 1967 and 1980, the club hit the depths in 1990, when a large debt almost forced them to fold. In the last 15 years, Richmond regained a strong financial position without enjoying any sustained finals success. Nonetheless the Tigers boast a mighty history (ten premierships) and a host of star players and personalities who have contributed to the formation of the unique Richmond football identity.

Since its inception in the mid-1880s, the club has been based at the Richmond Cricket Ground (better known as the Punt Road Oval), just a few hundred metres to the east of the Melbourne Cricket Ground, where the Tigers have played their home games since 1965. A late bloomer, Richmond struggled until the start of the twentieth century, so it was not offered an invitation to join the Victorian Football League (VFL) until 1908. After World War I, Richmond matured quickly, enjoyed more success than many of the more established clubs. The Tigers created great rivalries with both Carlton and Collingwood. At this time, the city of Richmond was an industrial, blue-collar area nicknamed "Struggletown". The working-class supporters identified strongly with the club and the Tigers developed a massive following during the golden period of the 1930s.

Extraordinary high points interspersed among long periods of mediocrity has been the pattern of the club's form in the years since World War II. Regardless, Richmond's team has to only show a hint of success and a game against one of the other "big four" will pack them in at the MCG. In 1980, the Tigers were the first sporting team in Australia to attract one million paying spectators in a season (1,065,603).


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