What is a marquee?

Andy_Roo Roar Guru

By Andy_Roo, Andy_Roo is a Roar Guru

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12 Have your say

    While the specifics of a marquee player’s role differs depending on the sport and the situation, a marquee player is always expected to deliver both on and off the field.

    On the field they are expected to perform at a level above that of the regular players in their competition. To be able to score goals, tries or take huge marks. To do the unbelievable. To inspire.

    Off the field, the marquee is expected to raise the profile of both the club and often the game as a whole. To be able to engage kids and perform clinics. To give a name to an otherwise faceless sport.

    In Australia different sports need marquees and for different reasons.

    Football is a sport which has international appeal but not as much domestic appeal. Most people would know Manchester United and also who Ronaldo is. The spread of the A-League continues, but not many punters could name names in most A-League teams. The game is only just attracting that celebrity feel with Heskey, ADP, Ono.

    Football needs marquee players to lift the profile of both the game and the clubs. With the A-League in its infancy this is a good strategy and players the calibre of Del Piero are worth every penny.

    In rugby league, marquees are not needed for NRL teams. They already have the fan-base and most people know the game well enough to rattle off the names of plenty of players if asked. Johnathan Thurston and Billy Slater are already household names.

    In the AFL the same applies. In the AFL states the game is already a religion and players god-like figures. Marquees are already a dime a dozen, even if they don’t know it.

    Except when expansion comes into the picture. In the expanding markets of Sydney and Gold Coast a marquee is definitely an advantage.

    AFL superstars like Gary Ablett are excellent marquees but the AFL looked even further with the signing of big names from the popular rival code. Karmichael Hunt has proven his worth both on and off the field, while Israel Folau’s worth as a marquee is highly debatable.

    Super Rugby, while sometimes seen as the poor cousin of rugby league, is still in its infancy. Expansion teams in the Western Force and Melbourne Rebels have utilised marquee players which have been highly valuable. Nathan Sharpe lifted the profile of the Western Force in its infancy.

    So while marquees are an essential part of any expansion or establishment phase of a sport or a club, their worth to established sports and clubs is limited.

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    The Crowd Says (12)

    • Roar Guru

      December 18th 2012 @ 8:29am
      Rabbitz said | December 18th 2012 @ 8:29am | ! Report

      A marquee is a big tent…


      • December 18th 2012 @ 5:55pm
        Ben of Phnom Penh said | December 18th 2012 @ 5:55pm | ! Report

        You are being silly. Everyone knows it is a French noble

    • December 18th 2012 @ 8:36am
      Titus said | December 18th 2012 @ 8:36am | ! Report

      In Football some players have reached a level where everyone accepts that they are worth more but in Rugby League everyone is more or less at the same level. Picking players out randomly and saying, here you have $1 000 000 while everyone else gets half that is just going to cause disharmony and for no reason.

    • Roar Guru

      December 18th 2012 @ 10:41am
      Cameron Kellett said | December 18th 2012 @ 10:41am | ! Report

      Completely agree Andy_Roo.

      There is no need for a marquee in either AFL/NRL as these are the two best competitions in the world for their respective sports, therefore you wouldn’t find anyone better. A-league on the other hand can utilise this as our competition is not the best in the world and being a world game provides the opportunity to secure the services of ADP to grow the game. Best thing for the A-league is if continual growth occurs then exposure, marketability and interest from overseas will only continue the development of our local product.

    • December 18th 2012 @ 2:03pm
      Ian Whitchurch said | December 18th 2012 @ 2:03pm | ! Report

      “With the A-League in its infancy this is a good strategy and players the calibre of Del Piero are worth every penny”.

      Crap. The A-League needs players like Berisha and Ifill, who are both good and playing for more than one or two years. They are players who can help build a team’s identify and continuity over a number of years.

      Wasting money on a Del Piero or a Kewell, on the other hand, does nothing for the long-term development of the club or the code.

      • December 18th 2012 @ 6:03pm
        Titus said | December 18th 2012 @ 6:03pm | ! Report

        Certainly helps with crowds though.

        • December 21st 2012 @ 5:52pm
          Ian Whitchurch said | December 21st 2012 @ 5:52pm | ! Report


          Evidence, thank you.

          I see a temporary effect that goes away rapidly, and certainly doesnt last across seasons.

    • December 18th 2012 @ 6:02pm
      Titus said | December 18th 2012 @ 6:02pm | ! Report

      Didn’t he play in a band called The Funky Bunch?

    • December 19th 2012 @ 9:53am
      clayts said | December 19th 2012 @ 9:53am | ! Report

      A tent used at parties

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