One of the reasons for Melbourne's poor season was their status as the most amateur of all clubs, with six players playing for no payment. Earlier in the season the club had announced that at some point in the near future they would openly pay their men instead of doing it under the table, but they crashed to their worst VFL season yet and one of their worst ever since being formed.
At the end of the season a newspaper article described them as "without doubt one of the worst sides that have yet appeared in league football." At the MCC's annual meeting strong criticism was levelled against the management of the team. The committee claimed that their poor performance was as a result of their staunch commitment to amateurism.
Later in the year it was suggested that they had dropped their opposition and were prepared to play players and a coach.
Some sources suggest that in one of the games against South Melbourne the field umpire bounced the ball in the centre after a Melbourne point because he believed the goal umpire had made an incorrect call.