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Fox Soccer Plus (FSP) in the USA and TSN2 in Canada will carry the Grand Final between Hawthorn and Sydney LIVE on Friday night / Saturday morning, September 28th / 29th.  US coverage on FSP will begin at 9:00 PM EDT Friday including most pre-match festivities; Coverage will continue until 4:30 AM EDT Saturday concluding after the awards ceremony and post match interviews. First bounce is about 12:30 AM EDT. Canadian coverage on TSN2 will begin at 11:30 PM EDT and run to 4:00 AM. If you have no access to any of the preceding options, the game will be live on and you can signup at (removed link - obsolete).  Fans should check our TV Schedule page for details on the coverage and our TV Info page for more information on FSP and TSN2   For those looking for parties, see our listings on our Grand Final Party page.  We have a timeline of Grand Final Day events posted here.   (Note:  the only live coverage in North America is via these outlets and they are available nationally via cable and satellite services -- see our TV Info page.)

Article last changed on Sunday, May 19, 2013 - 3:26 PM EDT


Posted by Rick Dawes (not verified) on September 28, 2012

Somewhat sad day and I've never felt that way on a grand final day. For the first time that I can remember in quite awhile the Grand Final will not be available to be viewed on tv where I live. Last year I was able to watch Geelong claim the flag on HiDef ESPN2. Tonight I can either log on to my laptop and watch via LiveAFL.TV (what a misnomer) that i had to pay for all year and hope that we are afforded pre and post match content or I can wait until Tues morning next week and watch a 2 hour replay on fueltv. Oh boy!! I have watched (if my memory serves me) every grand final live for the last 7-8 years even the 2005 grand final between Sydney and West Coast as Hurricane Rita came too close to my area that night. For those of you having parties enjoy. Hopefully when this contract is done the AFL will wise up and make their terrific product available to the masses again


I have no desire for us to repeat the same discussion that has been on this site all season. Every complaint has been aired, repeatedly.  Sorry if I sound a little annoyed but I am. 

[tired, frustrated rant] I am truly sorry that ANY fan of the sport can't see it. I remember a time when we fought just to get pay per view coverage of the Grand Final and highlights every week but most fans have forgotten those days or never knew them. I have worked my backside off for 17+ years to get footy to fans in the USA and Canada but 99.9% of them have never provided even a dime to AFANA for what we do.

I patiently wade through thousands of e-mails a year from fans far and wide. Tonight I will help fans looking for a party even as I am watching the pre-match entertainment. Ben has posted 40 to 80 parties every year since 1998! Paat worked for hours to get prizes for many parties, promote events in the US for footy including traveling at his own expense, and more. Jeff has updated the TV schedule hundreds of times over the past few seasons. Janet and the writers down in Oz have written reports on AFL matches every week for a decade, without pay or travel expenses. No one feels sorry for our staff when they can't watch footy. They don't even get so much as a "thank you" message from fans. So why do we keep doing it? Frankly, I don't know. Maybe, just maybe, we love the sport and hope others know that and know we would do whatever we could to get the best coverage possible for fans.

I know, better than almost anyone else, how important footy and this game is. I know how much it means to me and most fans.  If I could see a fix that would make everyone happy I'd ring the AFL right now.  But I don't and as far as I can tell, neither does anyone else. Through at least 2014 this is what we have and no amount of on-going complaints and AFL / Fox bashing here is going to change that. All we are doing is alienating the AFL and Fox at this stage. Yes, they read this site.

AFANA Chairman Emeritus and Site Admin

Posted by Rick Dawes (not verified) on September 28, 2012

Rob: As I have always stated I respect the job you do. But I will point out that this is the first time I have posted here since the NAB cup season so this "all season" discussion you mention just doesn't exist. I too have been a fan for a long long time (since back in the 70's as a US citizen living in Melbourne at 19). I know for sure you have worked tirelessly to make this work, so I apologize if you ever took my criticism personally about the job you do here at AFANA. I was making a comment that for the first time in many many years I would not be able to witness it in the best possible way. We have no other AFL fans where I live. There are no big parties nearby. So, I am stuck in my own world enjoying a sport I truly love and tonight that will be by wathcing the culmination of a great season on a d*mn laptop. Now I'm getting annoyed at the mere thought of that. I thank you for your efforts to make the game available here in the states. I don't believe there is anything I could say or do to make you see that I'm a fan and mean no harm.Sorry that that is the way you take it. Hopefully you will allow me to post again in the future and I will attempt to keep the discussion on the "footy" and not the coverage Rick
Posted by Rick Dawes (not verified) on September 29, 2012

Great, Now I see that you are blocking my responses. I have tried to be nice and bite my tongue but screw it since I'm done with you and your site. So here goes. You petty little man. I blame you for the complete morass that has become of the ability of me and other fans to watch this great sport. If you had anything to do (which from how defensive you get) with the contract being signed between fox soccer plus and the afl then you sold out cheaply. What was that great provider b4 them, oh yeah, Sentana or some long forgotten bankrupt entity. Thats where fox soccer plus will be before there contract expires. Just to let you know. It was on ESPN2(grand finals), regular season coverage on ESPN3 and then boom FOX FRICKIN SOCCER PLUS! Great job moron. It will now and forever be delegated to the fringe junk pile. Way to represent. I pray you aren't getting compensated in any way from them. How many fewer thousands are not able to watch the game tonight because of you settling for FSP. I hope they're as angry as I am as my bandwith varies which makes this viewing average at best. If this is a statement of what you can do after 17 years, wow are you ineffective and may I say job not done!!!

First, no one blocked anything.  If you had noticed when you posted, you are told that messages from users who are not logged in go to moderation. That's been true here for seven years.  You are no exception.  If you log in, you post immediately, Try it. Secondly, I was watching the game not reviewing posts, so it waited until now.

Third, your rant is precisely the problem. No one, not me, not you, not any AFL fan in the country has the right to footy whenever, wherever, and however they want it. We have to show we are deserving in numbers and sponsors to get it. This is NOT how to do it. 

Read my reply to your earlier message.  Again, I am sorry if you took it personally, too.  The fact is, selling the AFL is darn hard when the networks feel we the US fans, are never happy no matter what we get.  TV sport is a hard market and unless and until we get better ratings and better sponsors we won't make progress. 

Finally, I was not in the room when the AFL agreed to this deal.  I wish I was. I might have let them know what fans like yourself would say.  If I had, they might well have simply given up on the US market. By the way, they had no other offers. It was FSP or nothing. Neither AFANA nor the AFL wanted to drop ESPN. However, as I've said here before on this site, the AFL and ESPN could not come to terms for business reasons.  Sometimes deals don't get done even if both parties want it. I won't even bother to address the other points you are mistaken on.  Suffice it to say, if it was easy to get better coverage as many fans think it is, we'd have it. 

AFANA Chairman Emeritus and Site Admin

Posted by Bob on September 29, 2012

All I can say is WOW!  I've been around the AFANA long enough to know Rob and the other officers work their butts off trying to please us. But there's no pleasing some people.  I'm sure if anyone feels he could do a better job they would welcome his participation.  Sure I was disappointed that I have to pay to watch what I watched for free last year.  But that's life.  Get over it.  I certainly got my money's worth out of my year's subscription to AFL LiveSport TV, especially the Grand Final.  It would made our old friend KC Swan Lipp proud.

My thanks to Rob and all the AFANA board members for your exceptional service.

Posted by Rick Dawes (not verified) on September 30, 2012

First, I wish to apologize. And it goes completely to you Rob, I was extremely frustrated last night watching an awesome GF. And whether you accept my apology or not is up to you, I truly was out of line. However, as is to be expected from Perform Group and probably my internet provider, the quality was excellent maybe 50% of the time, the rest was a blurry mix of brown and gold/red and white. I read your response to my first post and just got more angry (and jealous) about the ones who were able to watch it on TV. I will do my best to bite my tongue about coverage and instead try to keep the topic on afl happenings etc.I have watched just about every match that has been provided one way or another for the past 3-4 years, and that too is tough with the inconsistencies of the internet options. I feel I possess as much knowledge as any native North American about this great sport, not just from the past few years, but from my following it the past 20+ years. I would be glad to assist you guys in any way that I could to help further the cause of getting increased exposure of the great sport of AFL footy Rick Dawes


Apology accepted.

Trust me when I say I understand the frustration. I wish we had a perfect solution but we don't and there isn't one on the horizon. The reality is that until the sport gets better ratings and better sponsors it's going to be hard to get better coverage. The answer for this is better marketing and promotion of the sport will lead to better ratings and sponsors. This the heart of what AFANA has tried to do. Most of our efforts in those areas are invisible to fans. We are able to influence AFL and TV network decisions and we do; but neither can we control them nor can we control the market forces changing sports coverage on TV.

It isn't that we don't want fans to comment. Rather we need positive suggestions on what to do and real support, including financial. It's frustrating for me when we have to repeat ourselves over and over on the same criticisms. We need fans to read what is already posted but they don't and instead just repeat the same complaints as the last 200 fans. This season has been the worst in that regard. As Ben says in this thread, some of the e-mail has been way over the top.

Everyone wants to believe there was some conspiracy between an incompetent and clueless AFL and AFANA to deny them coverage on ESPN which couldn't be farther from the truth. No one was more upset than I was when the AFL and ESPN couldn't make a deal. Our reaction has to be tempered though. I can say some things behind the scenes to the AFL that I won't say in public but telling them they don't care or have no clue is not going to lead to a useful response on their part. 

I'm always looking for help and shortly we will send out a call for help for 2013 along with our request for financial support. If you see where you can help then please let me know. 

AFANA Chairman Emeritus and Site Admin

Hi RIck -

Firstly, thank you for your apology to Rob, with whom I have worked at this site since the very beginnning. Second, apologies for the late reply but this is the first time I have checked emails since Thursday.

Because AFANA is the virtual face of North Amercian coverage, we do get the flak. As Rob said, we have no control over whatever deals the AFL chooses to cut with overseas markets. In 1996, it took months of petitioning to get footy back on the air.By the time we got to see anything, the season was half over. Although things have improved since then, it still seems to be an annual fight to get decent coverage. I myself was extremely disappointed that MHZ decided to drop it from their programming as I am not interested in subscribing to a sports package jsut to get one game a week.

I do have to admit that I was slightly disappointed that we did not ge to see the pregame entertainment.

One option - if you cannot get access to games on TV - is the live radio broadcasts at the AFL websitte. The best station is SEN. They also have wonderful programs about the game during the season. Although the station lives up to its name - Sports Entertainment Network - they have wonderful programs throughout the day and night about footy during the season. And fans can call in to express their opinions and have a go at trivia contests, etc. Now that the season is over, they will mostly be talking about cricket, the horse racing carnival and other sports.

You say you have a great knowledge of the game. I've been following the game since 1993 and have read the history of the game as well. Would love to challenge you to a trivia contest.

Feel free to drop me a line.

Lisa Albergo
ausfooty[at)comcast[ dot }net

Posted by Swans500 on October 03, 2012

 I am not understanding why people are saying the pre-game stuff was not on FSP....Lisa, are you in The USA or Canada? I though ht the GF coverage was great...4 hours of pre-game on FSP on my Pittsburgh Verizon Fios TV service.?!

BTW, I think the internet coverage (Every single game live for only $100) this year on AFL Live was very reliable and the best value and coverage  I have experienced in this country. Was very impressed....


Posted by admincms on October 06, 2012

Hi Dennis,

I don't think anyone is saying the pre-game wasn't on FSP. On the service it only had one hour of pre-game as opposed to 3.5 hours on fSP. 

Glad that was a good value for you.  Apparently this season, as usual, it had issues for fans on broadband services slower than mine or yours or on non-Windows platforms. This seems pretty much the story every season. 

AFANA Chairman Emeritus and Site Admin


Forgive Rob his defensive replies. All of us who work with AFANA are the target of e-mails from fans who complain about the coverage, blaming us most of the time for it and Rob gets the brunt of it, especially around this time of the season. I've seen some of the more vitriolic ones and they get pretty ugly.

Your post didn't do that. You were, more or less, venting about the situation from how I read it, which is understandable given how this year our coverage options were severely limited. Rob was (I'm assuming) venting as well as he gets the brunt of complaints from people. Not saying the response was right but from what I know of Rob, and I've known him for years now, he wasn't meaning it to be personal.

Regarding coverage, this year was a major step back. Last year was great as I could fire up my Xbox 360 and watch games on the ESPN app. If I was out and about, I could go to and watch it from there. For whatever reason, the AFL and ESPN couldn't make it work. If we had anything to say about it, we would've pushed for them to at least keep it how it was as having the Grand Final live was great. We had no part in the discussion, however. All we can do is broadcast footy fans' desires to watch the game over here to the AFL in hopes the work out a deal, which is what we've been doing for years now.

If you wish to blame us for the coverage, that's your choice. We have very little input in the matter other than expressing what fans tells us and, next year, we'll again tell them that the lack of coverage this year caused a great amount of frustration from us footy fans. Hopefully they'll do what they can to expand that coverage so more of us can watch it on television.

AFANA Webmaster


My response was a product of the frustration I feel for the endless complaints I receive here and elsewhere.  It's not personal, it's simply that "we", meaning AFANA and the fans, have debated this issue endlessly this year.  There are very long threads I could point you to that went on for months after the FSP deal was announced and later when MHz dropped out. No, you didn't post to them, but dozens of others did. The e-mail is worse.

I'm just tired (and so are all the volunteers here) of the way we are the target of the complaints. I apologize if I was harsh, but if you saw the e-mail I get you'd understand why. If people supported us occasionally it might help but they don't. 

AFANA Chairman Emeritus and Site Admin

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