|Ground||Sydney Football Stadium
Sydney FC is a professional football (soccer) club based in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia and competes in the country's premier football (soccer) competition, the A-League. Sydney FC were inaugural winners of the A-League in 2006 and are considered one of the most successful teams in Australia having won two national A-League Championships (2006 and 2010) and one Premiers' Plate (2010). Sydney also remain the only A-League team ever to win the OFC Champions League as since 2006 A-League teams have gained qualification to the AFC Champions League instead, in which Sydney has also competed. They finished 2nd in the group stage of the 2007 season of the tournament and also competed in the 2011 season. Having won titles in the W-League and in the National Youth League Sydney hold the distinction of being the only club in the A-League to have won all 3 competitions.
Its home ground is Allianz Stadium, a 45,500 seat multi-use venue in the suburb of Moore Park. Right from the beginning Sydney FC was marketed as the "glamour club" of the new competition, with the involvement of the club's high-profile personnel, including investor and actor Anthony LaPaglia, ex-Manchester United star Dwight Yorke as the team's first "marquee player" and 1990 FIFA World Cup winner Pierre Littbarski as manager in the first season. Sydney went on to sign Former English International defender Terry Butcher as the 2006–07 season coach, Brazilian superstar midfielder Juninho Paulista in the 2007–08 season, Socceroo legends John Aloisi and Brett Emerton in their 2008–09 and 2011-12 seaons, and Italian legend Alessandro Del Piero in the 2012–13 season, with each as the highest paid footballer in Australia in their respective seasons. Current Australian captain Lucas Neill, striker Benito Carbone of Italy, and Japanese legend Kazuyoshi Miura have also made appearances in the sky blue jersey.
The first steps towards the foundation of Sydney FC were taken in April 2004 when Soccer New South Wales (now Football NSW) announced their intention to bid for a licence in the new Australian soccer competition. The preference was for the club to play out of Parramatta Stadium.
The bid was lodged with the Australian Soccer Association (now Football Federation Australia) on 19 July, challenged only by a consortium headed by Nick Politis, known as the "Sydney Blues", for Sydney's place in the 'one team per city' competition. A public row broke out between the two bidders after reports that the ASA were set to vote in favour of Sydney FC, causing Politis to withdraw his support for a team, and leaving Sydney FC as the only candidate remaining.
Sydney was officially launched as a member of the new 8-team A-League on 1 November 2004, with a 25% stake in the club held by Soccer NSW, the remainder privately owned.Walter Bugno was announced as the inaugural chairman of the club. On 11 December 2004, Soccer NSW announced that it would pull out of its involvement with Sydney FC amid concerns over part owner Frank Lowy's autocratic style in establishing the club and lack of consultation with Soccer NSW on key Sydney FC issues. These included the choice of the Sydney Football Stadium over Parramatta Stadium as the team's home ground, and the erosion of Soccer NSW's initial 100 per cent involvement to just 25 per cent.
By February 2005, Sydney had filled 16 of their allowed 20 squad positions—attracting Socceroos Alvin Ceccoli, Clint Bolton, Steve Corica and David Zdrilic as well as youth internationals Justin Pasfield, Mark Milligan, Wade Oostendorp, Iain Fyfe and Jacob Timpano. German Pierre Littbarski was signed as Head Coach, to be assisted by former Norwich City player Ian Crook. Sydney FC played its first ever match against Manly United FC on 25 March 2005, winning 6–1. Shortly after, Sydney set off on a tour to the United Arab Emirates to play matches against local teams FC Hatta, Al Ain FC and Al Jazira, winning all three. Whilst in Dubai, Sydney FC announced that they had agreed to terms with former Manchester United player Dwight Yorke to join Sydney as their "marquee player" – one paid outside of the $1.5 million salary cap — for two seasons.
Sydney FC's first competitive match was held against Queensland Roar at Central Coast Stadium in Gosford as part of an Australian qualifying tournament to enter the 2005 Oceania Club Championship. After winning the match 3–0, Sydney went on to defeat Perth Glory and the Central Coast Mariners to win their first piece of silverware and qualify for the Oceania Club Championship, to be held in Tahiti. Despite an early scare against New Zealand club Auckland City FC, Sydney won all of their matches in the competition and qualified for the 2005 FIFA Club World Championship in Japan. The start of the 2005 Pre-Season Cup marked Sydney FC's first match at Allianz Stadium, as well as Dwight Yorke's first appearance for the club—Yorke scoring the first goal of Sydney's 3–1 win which stretched their unbeaten run to 9 competitive matches (15 including friendlies). Upon reaching the semi-finals, Sydney's unbeaten run finally ended at 11 with Perth Glory midfielder Nick Ward scoring in injury time to inflict the new club's first ever loss.
Sydney FC's first season was ultimately a success. Finishing 2nd on the ladder behind Adelaide United they went on to defeat Central Coast Mariners 1–0 in the 2006 A-League Grand Final with Steve Corica scoring in the second half. However their success wouldn't last long, with German manager Pierre Littbarski leaving the club due to being forced to accept a lower pay cheque and inaugural marquee player Dwight Yorke being signed by Premier League club Sunderland. Former English international Terry Butcher was signed as their new coach for the 2006–07 season, however it was regarded as an overall failure, with Sydney playing poor football, despite the signing of Alex Brosque and Benito Carbone as a Guest player. Sydney also had 3 points taken away during the season, after it was found that they had breached the Salary cap, involving player David Zdrillic. Despite the off field problems, Sydney scraped into the finals series, however lost out in the semi final to Newcastle Jets. Despite him leading Sydney into the finals, Sydney fans were unhappy with Butchers tactics, and both Butcher and Sydney FC went their separate ways. Sydney would then sign Branko Čulina for their 2007 Asian Champions League campaign, where they finished second in the group, one point behind ultimate champions and J-League heavyweights Urawa Red Diamonds. Despite the ACL success, Sydney FC's start to the 07–08 season was poor, and the club sacked him, replacing him with former Adelaide United manager John Kosmina. Sydney FC played well for the rest of the season, but got knocked out in the finals by Brisbane Roar.
Kosmina couldn't repeat the success of the previous season, replacing Brazilian international Juninho with Socceroos hero John Aloisi on a million dollar contract. However Aloisi didn't perform well at all during the season, and came under heavy fire, along with manager Kosmina, whose tactics were seen as controversial, and his relationship with the media, often becoming angry and frustrated didn't help causes either, many players fell out of favour with the coach, including Steve Corica and Clint Bolton and for the first time in the clubs history, they failed to make the play-offs. As a result Kosmina was fired, and new Owners were brought in – Russian billionaire David Traktovenko. The fresh change at the club was about to bear fruit, when Sydney announced they had signed Czech Republic manager Vítězslav Lavička. Lavicka completely changed the structure of the club, and for its first time turning it into a serious, European style football club. He kept faith in Steve Corica and John Aloisi and several others who had threatened to walk out on the club, and as a result, Sydney FC won its first premiership in the club's history. Sydney made it to the Grand Final of the 5th season of the A-League after defeating Wellington Phoenix in the preliminary final. The Grand Final was played against Melbourne Victory at Etihad Stadium in Melbourne. Sydney took the lead after 61 minutes through a Mark Bridge header, just seconds after Melbourne had a goal disallowed for offside. Melbourne equalised through Adrian Leijer in the 81st minute, and the game went on to a penalty shootout with no goals scored in extra time. Melbourne skipper Kevin Muscat missed his penalty, with his shot hitting the post. Sydney FC won the Grand Final 4–2 on penalties which handed them their second Hyundai A-League Championship.
For the 2012/2013 season the club acquired the services of Alessandro Del Piero. He will be paid $2 million for each year and become the highest-paid footballer to ever play in the A-League.
“This is huge for Sydney FC, huge for the A-League and huge for Australian football,” Sydney FC Chairman Scott Barlow said.
“We feel honoured that Alessandro has decided to play for Sydney FC and we share his excitement that a move to Sydney FC will create a lasting legacy for football in this country.”
Colours and badge
The primary club colour of Sydney FC is sky blue, which represents the state colour of New South Wales. The secondary club colour is navy blue, with additional contrasting colours of orange and white.
The Sydney FC badge was created and used since the clubs founding in 2004. It features a football set centrally in a stylised crest shape. Above the ball is the shape of three shells of the Sydney Opera House, an internationally recognisable symbol of the city of Sydney. Below the ball is the Commonwealth Star, a seven-pointed star symbolising the Federation of Australia.
Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
|Period||Kit Manufacturer||Shirt Sponsor||Minor Sponsor|
|2009-2011||Bing Lee/Sony||MBF Health Insurance
|2011-12||Adidas||UNICEF||Sydney Children's Hospital
Other sponsors include:
Sydney FC play their home matches at Allianz Stadium (commonly known as SFS), located in the Sydney suburb of Moore Park. It was built in 1988 to be the premium "rectangular field" for rugby league matches. It is also now used for association football and rugby union for major matches and domestic competition.
The stadium has easy access from the city centre, with shuttle buses running from nearby Central Station on match days. It has been the venue for several Australian international matches (notably World Cup Qualifier against Argentina in 1993). The stadium's capacity was stated at 41,159 prior to renovations in 2007, although the attendance of the 2006 A-League grand final exceeded this number by over 500. The currently stated capacity is 45,500.
Sydney FC have played matches at other Sydney venues. Parramatta Stadium in western Sydney was the venue for an AFC Champions League match against Indonesian football side Persik Kediri in April 2007 when the SFS was unavailable due to a NRL match being played there. A friendly match against Los Angeles Galaxy was played at ANZ Stadium in November 2007 due to its greater capacity, which drew a crowd of 80,295. Some argued that if the home stadium of Sydney FC was moved to the ANZ Stadium in Sydney Olympic Park, then it would have attracted much larger crowds, making it an easier travel distance from the stadium to the south and south-west districts of Sydney. However, as of 2012 these districts are now represented in the A-League so such a move would be unnecessary. In December 2011, Sydney played a (2–0 winning) match at Kogarah Oval against Brisbane Roar, as the SFS was unavailable due to concerts being held at the ground that weekend.
Sydney FC's primary training ground is at Macquarie University in North Ryde where they use the grounds, and they also have advantage of the aquatic centre which they use for post match recovery sessions. Occasionally Sydney will train at the SFS and have been seen after home games having recovery sessions at local beaches such as Coogee Beach, Bondi Beach and Maroubra.
Sydney FC draw support from right across Sydney, and is one of the most heavily supported clubs in Australia, as they were the only A-League team from Australia's largest city until 2012. The largest supporter group of Sydney FC is known as "The Cove", and are located in Bay 23 (at the northern end) of Allianz Stadium. The name came from the original name given to the colonial settlement of Sydney — Sydney Cove. This settlement was located on the piece of land that is now the Circular Quay ferry terminal.
Cove members attend every home match and also travel as a group around the country to support the team at away matches. As a vocal group, The Cove demonstrates its support by singing football chants, wearing club colours, standing up, waving flags and holding banners. On 7 July 2006, Australian rock singer Jimmy Barnes recorded a club song entitled 'Sydney FC For Me' with 25 members of The Cove singing back-up vocals. It was released prior to the start of the 2006–07 season. Sydney FC's Cove is also noted as being one of the largest supporters groups in Australia.
See also Sydney FC league record by opponent
- Melbourne Victory — The Big Blue — The clash between Australia's two largest cities is considered the biggest rivalry in the League by both sets of fans. Sydney and Melbourne have been historical rivals for over a century, and their soccer teams' rivalry is no exception. This rivalry has become arguably the most bitter in the A-League, with matches between the two teams characterised by spiteful confrontations, controversy and consistently record-breaking crowds.
- Western Sydney Wanderers — The Sydney Derby — With the introduction of the Wanderers into the competition, Sydney FC now contest a true local derby for the first time. The two teams played their first match on 20 October 2012 at the Wanderers' home ground, Parramatta Stadium. Sydney FC won the match 0–1 in front of a near-capacity crowd of 19,126 fans.
- Central Coast Mariners — The South NSW Derby — Things hotted up in the first season when Sydney took the Championship title by defeating Central Coast. The minor rivalry was expressed in a fantastic 5–4 game in season three, with Sydney victorious due to a penalty kick in stoppage time.
- Newcastle Jets — The third of three local New South Wales derbies for Sydney FC. Newcastle defeated Sydney FC in the 2006/07 season 3–2 on aggregate to progress to the minor semi finals. Sydney then defeated Newcastle on the final day of the 2011/12 season 3–2 at home, to secure a Final Series berth at the Jets' expense.
- Brisbane Roar — The clash between the 'two state of origins' was first ignited in the 2007–08 Hyundai A-league finals when Brisbane Roar (then known as Queensland Roar) secured victory over Sydney FC after two hard fought legs with the second leg being played in front of a club record crowd of 36,211 at Suncorp. After being stagnant for the seasons to follow, the rivalry between the biggest club in their respective states re-ignited after Sydney FC ended the Brisbane Roar's record-breaking 36-game unbeaten streak in the A-League on 4 December 2011. The return clash in Brisbane saw an on field clash between Sydney's Pascal Bosschaart and Brisbane's Besart Berisha following Brisbane Roar's last-gasp 2–1 victory at Suncorp Stadium.
- Shanghai Shenhua — In December 2008 Sydney management released a statement that Sydney had signed a permanent sister-club relationship with Chinese Super League Club Shanghai Shenhua, both clubs will trade players, as well as coaching tips and medical and training methods.
- Manly United Football Club
- Macarthur Rams Football Club
- Macquarie University
On 21 December 2009, Sydney FC inaugurated an elite academy to develop young players. The main goal of the academy was stated as to produce better players by providing technical and tactical knowledge, as well as to identify potential new talent that could represent Sydney in the National Youth League and A League in future. This began a continued commitment from Sydney to invest in and develop junior talent for the benefit of grassroots soccer. The initial 26 players taken in were drawn from the NSW State League clubs and consisted of junior players aged between 14–18 years old. They started training with the academy at Macquarie University.
Captains by Years (2005–present) Hyundai A-League games only.
- Chairman:Scott Barlow
- Vice Chairman: TBD
- Director: Michael Crismale
- Director: Jeremy Nicholas
- Director: Jamie Samaha
- Director: Mark Arbib
- Chief Executive Officer: Tony Pignata
- Financial Director: Grant Ingles
- GM, Community and Game Development: Stefan Kamasz
- General Manager, Fan Relationships: Rawya Jammal
- Senior sporting staff
- Head Coach: Frank Farina
- Assistant Coach: Steve Corica
- Strength/Conditioning Coach: Craig Duncan
- Goalkeeping Coach: Željko Kalac
- Chief Medical Officer: Dr. Daniel Biggs[dead link]
- Club Doctor: Dr. Andrew McDonald
- Club Physio: Stan Ivancic
- Assistant/Masseur: Joe Niutta
- Youth sporting staff
- Youth Coach: Brian Dene
- Assistant Youth Coach: Miro Vlastelica
- Goalkeeping Coach: Jimmy Fraser
- Physiotherapist: Daniel Kurlapski
- Head coach
Managers by Years (2005–present) Hyundai A-League games only.
|Pierre Littbarski||Feb 2005 – June 2006||2004–05 Oceania Club Champions
2005–06 Hyundai A-League Champions
|Terry Butcher||July 2006 – February 2007||23||9||8||6||39%|
|Branko Culina||April 2007 – October 2007||AFC Champions League 2007 Group Stage||9||2||3||4||22%|
|John Kosmina||October 2007 – March 2009||35||13||11||11||37%|
|Vítězslav Lavička||February 2009 – May 2012||2009–10 Hyundai A-League Premiers
2009–10 Hyundai A-League Champions
AFC Champions League 2011 Group Stage
|Ian Crook||May 2012–11 November 2012||6||2||0||4||33%|
|Steve Corica (Caretaker)||12 November 2012 – 27 November 2012||2||0||0||2||0%|
|Frank Farina||28 November 2012 – present||13||6||3||4||46%|
- Champions (1): 2005
- Fifth-place (1): 2005
Records and statistics
- Most appearances:
- A-League: Terry McFlynn – 169 (2004 - present)
- Most goals:
- Record transfer fee received: A$500,000 for Dwight Yorke from Sunderland A.F.C. .
- Record victory: 9–2 (vs Sobou FC — Oceania Club Championship, 2 June 2005)
- Record A-League victory: 7–1 (vs Wellington Phoenix — 2012-13, 19 January 2013)
- Record Consecutive Home Wins: 6 (27 December 2012 - 9 March 2013)
- Record defeat: 2-7 (vs Central Coast Mariners — A-League, 3 November 2012)
- Undefeated streak: 11 matches (7 May 2005 – 6 August 2005)
- A-League Regular Season Attendance: 35,419 (vs Newcastle Jets — 13 October 2012)
- A-League Finals Series Attendance: 41,689 (vs Central Coast Mariners — 5 March 2006)
- Record Average Regular Season Attendance: 18,637 (2012-13)
- Record Season Total Attendance: 242,278 (2012-13)
- Record Attendance: 80,295 (vs Los Angeles Galaxy — 27 November 2007)
|Season||League||Finals||Continental||Club World Cup|
|2011–12||27||10||8||9||37||42||38||5th||Finals Week 1|
|Pld = Played, W = Games won, D = Games drawn, L = Games lost, GF = Goals scored, GA = Goals against, GD = Goal difference, Pts = Points, Italic = in progress|
- "Australian Stadiums: Aussie Stadium". Austadiums. Retrieved 22 December 2006.
- "Sydney FC emerging as new league's glamour club". The Sydney Morning Herald. 27 October 2004. Retrieved 22 December 2006.
- "Budget FC closes door on Benito". Fox Sports. 7 November 2006. Retrieved 22 December 2006.
- "Soccer NSW announces bid for new national league". Soccer NSW. 7 April 2004. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "NSW 'cut ties' with new club over Lowy". The Sydney Morning Herald. 12 December 2004. Retrieved 1 January 2013.
- "Kewell major player behind Sydney team: report". The Sydney Morning Herald. 9 September 2004. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- Smith, Peter (21 July 2004). "ASA delighted with number of bids for new league". Football Federation Australia. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "ASA picks Soccer NSW". The World Game. 10 September 2004. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- Hall, Matthew (10 October 2004). "Harry now a Central figure". The Sun Herald. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Birth of Sydney FC is a magical moment". Football Federation Australia. 1 November 2004. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Sydney FC squad list". Sydney FC. 23 February 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Sydney FC starts with emphatic 6–1 win over Manly". Sydney FC. 6 April 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Petrovski and Carney score twice in Sydney's 7–1 win". Sydney FC. 12 April 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Talay's lone goal gives Sydney 1–0 win in Dubai". Sydney FC. 20 April 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Zdrilic goal gives Sydney 1–0 win over Al Jazira". Sydney FC. 20 April 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Yorke completes trifecta for Sydney FC". The Sydney Morning Herald. 18 April 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Steve Corica wonder goal gives Sydney a 3–2 win". Sydney FC. 2 June 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Ward comes off bench to seal Perth win". Football Federation Australia. 14 August 2005. Retrieved 23 December 2006.
- "Littbarski quits, blasting club 'lies'". The Age (Melbourne). 4 May 2006.
- "FC Won't Appeal Salary Cap Sentence". ABC News. 4 January 2007.
- "Del Piero agrees to finalise Sydney FC contract". Football Federation Australia. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
- "Del Piero to sign with Sydney FC". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 31 August 2012.
- "Ciao 4m Del Piero signs for two years". smh.com.au. Retrieved 6 September 2012.
- "Sydney FC and UNICEF do the rights things to improve child rights throughout Asia.". UNICEF. 20 February 2012. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
- "Sydney FC And Children’s Medical Research Institute (CMRI) Form Community Partnership". CMRI. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
- SCG Trust (9 July 2007). "Sydney Football Stadium returns as Aussie deal expires". League Unlimited. Retrieved 28 November 2007.
- Sydney Morning Herald : They're not just dribblers – these Coves are committed
- "Barnesy and The Cove record Sydney FC club song". Sydney FC. 7 July 2006.
- Gatt, Ray (16 January 2012). "Brisbane likely to lose fiery striker Besart Berisha; clubs facing fine". The Australian.
- "Sydney Seal Shanghai Link-Up". FourFourTwo Australia. 5 January 2009. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
- The World Game : Sydney inaugurate academy
- Transfer fee of £200,000; "Yorke completes Sunderland move". BBC Sport. 31 August 2006. Retrieved 15 August 2007.
- "Roar dominates but unable to break Sydney unbeaten run". 6 August 2005. Retrieved 22 December 2006. – N.B.: The 17 matches quoted includes friendly matches, which are not included in this record
- "Sydney FC vs Central Coast Mariners FC". 5 March 2006. Retrieved 22 December 2006.
2005/06 (First title)
2009/10 (First title)
2009/10 (Second title)