During the 1996 season, there were fears that the club would collapse in mid-season due to its lack of cash.

On the morning of this year's count, lions.com.au takes a look at three of the Club's most recent winners. It is the most prestigious award for individual players in the AFL.

With a stake in the ground, the football club could have better agitated for improvements to the ground by sourcing funds from other organisations such as the VFL. Fitzroy FC Ltd improved its relationship with the Brisbane Lions in the ten years from 1999–2009. Fitzroy largely resumed its original VFL/AFL identity through its continued use of their 1975–1996 VFL/AFL jumper, their club song and their 1884–1966 home ground at the Brunswick Street Oval. (Under VFA rules at the time, only goals were counted to the total team score).[5][6]. During the last eight weeks of the season Fitzroy's on field performances continued to deteriorate to the point where the team was thrashed week in, week out. ), with the old logo to be phased out altogether after 2024 (or 2017 in the case of the Brisbane Lions website). However, Fitzroy's most significant post-war success was in the early '80s, when the Lions made the finals four times, culminating in a preliminary final appearance in 1986. Fitzroy, Fitzroy, During this time, highlights for the club were individual achievements of their players, especially Haydn Bunton, Sr. The Fitzroy Football Club was formed at a meeting at the Brunswick Hotel on 26 September 1883,[4] at a time when Melbourne's population was rapidly increasing. In 1994, the club moved its home matches to Western Oval, its fourth match-day home ground in 10 years. The Brownlow Medal is awarded to the 'fairest and best' player in the AFL during the regular season. Fitzroy was the most successful club in the first 10 years of the VFL, winning four premierships and finishing runners-up on three occasions. Throughout its history, Fitzroy had multiple colours and kits, in conjunction with the changing of its nicknames.[18]. It was only when the Council Health Officer condemned the change rooms at the Brunswick Street Oval in 1966 and negotiations broke down between the council, (who offered a 21-year lease) and the football club, that the Fitzroy Football Club was forced to find another ground. That year the club's AFL playing operations merged with the Brisbane Bears to form the Brisbane Lions.

All four teams qualified for the finals, and Fitzroy won their next three games to win one of the strangest VFL premierships. Relationships between Fitzroy and Brisbane were strained in late 2009, when Brisbane announced that it was adopting a new logo for season 2010 and beyond, which Fitzroy Football Club believed contravened Section 7.2 c) of the merger agreement. Despite being the first club to win a VFL Grand Final, they were not the first team to win a VFL/AFL premiership; that honour belongs to the Essendon Football Club, who were crowned premiers in 1897 without a Grand Final being required. They began in the D1 section of the VAFA in 2009 and now, after having been promoted three times (2009, 2012, 2018), play in the Premier ‘B Division’. [17], Premiers (8): 1898, 1899, 1904, 1905, 1913, 1916, 1922, 1944. AFL/VFL Brownlow Medal Winners . No Medal awarded 1942-1945 due to WWII Voting systems: 1924-1930:One vote per game (equiv. Fitzroy lost in the VAFA D1 Grand Final to Rupertswood in 2009, but as a Grand Finalist was promoted to C-Grade for the 2010 season.

In 2018, Fitzroy won both the VAFA Premier C and the VAFA Premier C reserves competitions.[15].

In contrast, the 1916 Fitzroy team only won 2 home and away matches and finished last in a competition reduced by the effects of World War I to four teams. In Round 21, 48,884 people attended the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on 25 August 1996 for Fitzroy's last ever game in Melbourne as part of the AFL competition. This is compared with the Brisbane Lions bid, which proposed a 44-player senior list for 1997, and did not have the potential off-field strength of an all-Victorian merge.

However, the Cricket Club rejected the idea outright.

He polled maximum votes in Round 1 (33 disposals, 2 goals), Round 4 (27 disposals, 3 tackles), Round 5 (28 disposals, 2 goals), Round 8 (29 disposals, 6 marks) and Round 20 (27 disposals, 2 goals). For a brief time, it experimented in partnerships with other semi-professional and amateur clubs before incorporating the Fitzroy Reds (formerly University Reds) to play in the Victorian Amateur Football Association.

In 2015 the club initiated in a partnership with the Australian Catholic University to start fielding a women's team in the VWFL under the name of Fitzroy-ACU. Watch: Quinlan Winning Brownlow. It is also notable for being one of only three clubs (along with University and Hawthorn) to have played in the VFA, VFL/AFL and VAFA competitions of Australian rules football.

Those involved have different opinions on why the merger with North Melbourne was rejected, despite negotiations being so far advanced and indeed concluded on the morning of the 4 July. In total, six Fitzroy players have won the Brownlow Medal - Haydn Bunton (1931, 1932, 1935), Wilfred Smallhorn (1933), Denis Ryan (1936), Allan Ruthven (1950), Kevin Murray (1969) and Bernie Quinlan (1981) – reflecting, in particular, Fitzroy… They quickly became one of the most successful clubs, drawing large crowds to their home at the Brunswick Street Oval in Edinburgh Gardens, and consistently in the top four and winning the VFA premiership in 1895. It played its home games at Victoria Park, sharing it with Collingwood in 1985 and 1986, then at Princes Park from 1987 until 1993; and over the same time it moved through several different training and administrative bases, spending time first at the Westgarth Street Oval in Northcote,[10] then later Lake Oval in South Melbourne and Bulleen Park in Bulleen.[11]. This was followed by a night premiership win in 1978 and a then-League-record score of 36.22 (238) and greatest winning margin of 190 points in 1979. Fothergill was one of VFL’s young sensations, and what happened in the Brownlow Medal count provided a sensation of its own. With the Brownlow fever well and truly here we take a look at our most recent Brownlow winners.