- The first Australian Rules match was between Scotch and Melbourne Grammar schools, held on August 7, 1858.
- The Victorian Football Association was formed in 1877 - the original clubs were Hotham (North Melbourne), Melbourne, Geelong, Carlton, Albert Park (South Melbourne), St Kilda, Essendon and East Melbourne.
- An English football team toured Australia in 1888 - they played 25 matches in which they won 14.
- The first player to front the VFL Tribunal was St. Kilda's Bill Matthews in 1898 (in the second year of the VFL competition). He was found guilty (no charge was recorded) and received a severe reprimand.
- Player Lardie Tulloch was captain of Collingwood in the 1902 and 1903 Grand Finals, and he also umpired the 1907 Grand Final between Carlton and South Melbourne.
- The 1923 Grand Final was postponed a week due to heavy rain and not played until Saturday, October 20th – the same day of the Caulfield Cup. This was the latest ever finish to a season.
- In 1924, there was no "Grand Final" match, because the VFL experimented with the reinstatement of the round-robin format it had used in its inaugural 1897 season.
- Only four teams competed in the war-time season of 1916. Fitzroy finished bottom of the ladder after the regular season, but all four teams played in the finals, with Fitzroy winning the premiership. Adjusting the ladder according to the finals rankings left Richmond as wooden spooners.
- The only VFL/AFL player to have been knighted and to have served as a state governor was Sir Doug Nicholls, who played 54 games for Fitzroy between 1932 and 1937.
- The 1944 VFL Grand Final was the last time where both teams were led by playing coaches - Fred Hughson of Fitzroy and Jack Dyer of Richmond.
- Ten players were reported following the infamous Carlton v South Melbourne "Bloodbath" Grand Final of 1945.
- There have been three Grand Final draws in the history of VFL/AFL - in 1948, 1977 and 2010.
- Geelong hold the record for consecutive games without defeat. Before they won their record 23 games straight in 1952-53, they had two wins then a draw with Essendon at Windy Hill, making 26 consecutive games without defeat.
- AFL was played as a demonstration sport at the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne.
- Lawrence 'Laurie' Morgan is the only person to play VFL/AFL football and win an Olympic Gold Medal. He played 34 games for Fitzroy in 1937-39. In 1960 he represented Australia in equestrian, and won two gold medals.
it's a tough game AFL
- Only one team have won four consecutive grand finals, Collingwood in 1927, 1928, 1929 and 1930. Hawthorn played in seven successive grand finals from 1983 to 1989.
- Collingwood have played in the most Grand Finals. Essendon and Carlton have each won 16 Grand Finals, Collingwood 15.
- Did you know that the VFL-AFL Grand Final has been played at five venues other than the Melbourne Cricket Ground? In
1898, 1899 & 1944 (Junction Oval),
1900 (East Melbourne Cricket Ground),
1901 (Lake Oval, Albert Park),
1942, 1943 & 1945 (Princes Park), and
1991 (Waverley Park). (more on Grand Final venues).
- The biggest attendance at the Grand Final was 121,696 in 1970 for the match between Carlton and Collingwood.
- The match scheduled for 5 July 2015 between Geelong Cats and Adelaide Crows was cancelled with both teams awarded two premiership points, making it the only time a game had been cancelled outright in the league's history. This was following the murder of Adelaide's coach Phil Walsh two days earlier.
- The 2017 grand final was the first since the inaugural VFL grand final 119 years earlier where neither team had any players to have previously played in a grand final.
- In 2017, Dustin Martin became the first player in VFL/AFL history to win a premiership, the Brownlow Medal and the Norm Smith Medal in the same season.