President - Dr Ford
Vice-President - Henry Harrison
Secretary/Treasurer - Robert Carr
Captain - James Byrne
Vice-Captain - Ben Goldsmith
Second 20 Secretary - Thomas
Leading goalkickers - Austin Loughnan 4, Robert Carr 4
The growing strength of junior teams was demonstrated by the new rule giving them a handicap of just 20 to 18 in matches against senior teams.
At Melbourne it was decided that club uniform should be red cap, blue shirt and knickerbockers and grey stockings - though by the time matches began they had adopted red stockings instead. Match committee consisted of Byrne, Goldsmith, Bell and Carr. The club also decided to double the six of their goalposts to 20 feet to try and stop disputes about whether shots had registered a goal or not.
The first scratch match of the year was played on Saturday 19 April, with further games on Saturday 3, 10 and 17 May. The season was meant to kick off against Geelong on 17 May, then University on Queen's Birthday 24 May but their opponents were unable to field a team. Melbourne instead opened with a comfortable win over Richmond the following Saturday. Other originally scheduled matches against Public Schools (21 June), South Yarra (9 August) and a combination of four junior clubs (27 September) were not played. A game against Carlton scheduled for 13 September was postponed to Saturday 27 September due to poor weather.
For the first time the club had enough players to field a Second 20, but a match against Richmond on 2 August was cancelled because Melbourne couldn't field a side. A match against Richmond Union on 28 June was called off when the ball was lost.
During the year the club called upon the Minister of Lands to highlight the rough surface in the Richmond Paddock and to request permission to keep spectators clear of their ground, do repairs on the surface and put up a fence during matches. The minister suggested they were free to repair the ground as they saw fit but that in a public park the club had no right to keep people off the ground.
Carlton went through the season undefeated and were declared premiers. Melbourne had won more games during the year, but had played more and suffered three losses. They had also been defeated twice by the Blues.
|7 June||Albert Park||DRAW|
|5 July||East Melbourne||WIN|
|16 August||Albert Park||WIN|
|6 September||Richmond-East Melbourne||WIN|
|20 September||East Melbourne||WIN|
|31 May||Carlton Imperial||LOSS||0-5|
|21 June||Studley Park||LOSS||2-3|
|28 June||Richmond Union||DRAW||1-1|
|5 July||Carlton Imperial||?||Unknown|
|26 July||Albert Park||?||Unknown|
Anderson, W. Barker, Larry Bell, James Bennie, John Bennie, J. Booth, James Byrne, Campbell, Charles Carr, Robert Carr, GM Carter, Corrigan, C. Crooke, A. Cumming, Darchy, Raleigh Davidson, Charles Forrester, J. Forrester, Ben Goldsmith, Grice, H. Hammill, Tom Hepburn, Inglis, Charles Ireland, H. Jennings, Austin Loughnan, Andrew Loughnan, Marks, C. McCracken, Miller, Moore, A. Norcott, Norman, Oliver, T. Reade, H. Ryan, W. Thomas, Edwin Towle, G. Watson, C. Wheatland, W. Williams
Some sources say C. Carr kicked four goals for the season.
Age - 21/04/1873
Australasian - 03/05/1873
Advocate - 10/05/1873
Age - 17/05/1873
Age - 19/05/1873
Australasian - 24/05/1873
Leader - 24/05/1873
Australasian - 31/05/1873
Argus - 16/07/1873
Australasian - 20/09/1873
"Origins of Australian Football: Volume 1" by Mark Pennings