Is Melbourne The World’s Most Sports-Obsessed City?

Melburnians love their sport. We don’t care what sport it is, we love it.

Do we have the record?

In measuring this, I’m referring to teams specifically from Melbourne, with Melbourne in the team name. And I’m limiting us to the top-level city-based franchises five sports: AFL, cricket (BBL), soccer (A-League), and the two codes of rugby (NRL for league, Super Rigby for union).

That gives us:

  • Melbourne Demons
  • Melbourne Stars
  • Melbourne Renegades
  • Melbourne Victory
  • Melbourne City FC
  • Melbourne Storm
  • Melbourne Rebels

7 top-level sports teams. Nice.

However, is that the world’s best?

Firstly, comparing to other cities in Australia:

  • Adelaide: 4 (Crows, Strikers, United, Rams)
  • Brisbane: 5 (Lions, Heat, Roar, Broncos, Reds)
  • Canberra: 2 (Brumbies, Raiders)
  • Darwin: 0
  • Hobart: 1 (Hurricanes)
  • Perth: 2 (Scorchers, Glory)
  • Sydney: 5 (Swans, Sixers, Thunder, FC, Roosters)

Melbourne sits as clear winners. However, we are being a little unfair to teams where they are based in that city, but don’t go by that name (i.e., West Coast Eagles). But still, you can’t deny Melbourne’s success.

We’re not the best in the world, though.

If you change the big five leagues to the MLB, NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLS, then it’s clearly New York, who has…

  • New York Giants
  • New York Jets
  • New York Yankees
  • New York Mets
  • New York Knicks
  • New York Nets
  • New York Rangers
  • New York Islanders
  • New York Devils
  • New York Red Bulls
  • New York City FC

Whew, 11. That’s enough to put them on top.

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2 comments

    • Yes, you could argue for London and suburbs having seven teams in the top division of English soccer/football alone, even though they don’t carry the name of London.

      Even in that case, I can bring it back to Melbourne, as nine of the eighteen teams in the Australian Football League are from Melbourne suburbs.

      Liked by 1 person

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