We’re going through all 18 AFL clubs and picking their best sides from the last 20 years.
A player’s body of work during the 21st century is a key part of our criteria, therefore someone like Carlton great Stephen Silvagni loses value as he only played two seasons.
One of the strongest performers over the last 20 seasons, reaching the top eight on 15 occasions and featuring in 10 preliminary finals.
The Cats were led by just the two coaches since the turn of the century, with Chris Scott taking over the reigns from Mark Thompson for the 2011 season.
Three premierships and four grand final appearances between 2007 and 2011 had the Geelong side considered as one of the strongest of the last 30 years.
The loss of star midfielder Gary Ablett jr. and coach Thompson wasn’t enough to bring the club’s premiership successes to a halt, winning their prized third premiership to ice the cake.
The Cats have had 18 separate players make an All-Australian side this century, adding to an astonishing total of 45 selections.
GEELONG CATS TEAM OF THE CENTURY
Coach: Mark Thompson
GOLD COAST SUNS
A difficult entrance into the AFL so far for the Suns.
The club is yet to taste finals football in their nine seasons in the league, with their best season coming in 2014, where they finished 12th with a 10-12 record.
Gold Coast’s failure to maintain their key players has been their major downfall, with a flowing class of players moving onto greener pastures.
The Suns have just the one 150-game player in their near 200 game existence, with 10 of their 16 most experienced players having already left the club.
The issues throughout the club don’t just fall to the lack of security around their players, but their failed names in the coaches box.
All three of the Suns coaches have failed to reach 100 games in charge of the club and are yet to reach a 30% win rate.
Coach: Guy McKenna
Dissimilar to the Suns, the other new boys on the block in the Giants have made a strong impression on the compassion in short time.
A tough start for a young promising side would build the foundations for what was to come, with the club having to endure 57 loses across their first three season in the league.
GWS reached September in their fifth season, narrowly missing the Grand Final after a thriller against eventual-premiers in the Wester Bulldogs.
The club has since reached the finals in every year since and came one step away from premiership glory in 2019.
A number of stars players remain with the club while a host of their best names have departed their clubs over the last eight seasons.
Collectively, the club can master a side as strong as any in less than a decade and stand a chance to remain at the top for years to come.
Coach: Leon Cameron