Throughout the final years of the 1990s, AFL clubs across the land looked backward rather than forward, with selectors, historians and superstars converging to name their Teams of the 20th Century.

So, as we near the quarter-time mark of the 21st century, what better time to run the rule on which players are likely to feature when the selectors of tomorrow get together in several decades' time?

While every club has an array of deadset legends that can be called on, we here at Zero Hanger have employed the following rules of selection:

  • Only statistics recorded and achievements accrued since the start of the 2000 AFL season will be acknowledged.
  • All statistics and awards must have been accrued while playing for the club in question.
  • Any player selected must have played at least 100 senior games for their respective club since the start of the 2000 AFL season.

Next up, we head West to decide which ten Eagles have flown highest this century.



10. Jack Darling (2011-present) 

4 x leading goalkicker (2012, 2018, 2019 and 2021)
1 x All-Australian (2019)
1 x premiership player (2018)
277 games, 510 goals, 1.8 goals per game

While odd moments have punctuated points of Darling's career, any case to leave the key forward off this list should be ignored due to his sheer number of goals.

While playing second fiddle to Josh Kennedy for almost the entirety of his days as an Eagle, Darling has played it finely, slotting 510 goals - just four goals behind Peter Sumich and a share of second place on West Coast's all-time leading goalkicker ladder.

PERTH, WESTERN AUSTRALIA - MAY 20: Jack Darling of the Eagles celebrates after scoring a goal during the round nine AFL match between the West Coast Eagles and the Richmond Tigers at Optus Stadium on May 20, 2018 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Will Russell/AFL Media/Getty Images)