Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
Marty McDonnell

Known as
Marty McDonnell

28 December 1920

22 December 2005 (aged 84)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 18y 171d
Last game: 29y 241d

Height and weight
Height: 183 cm
Weight: 80 kg

Senior clubs

Jumper numbers
Footscray: 22, 32

Marty McDonnell

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV
FootscrayV/AFL1939-1941, 1944, 1946-19509220.0241%19
Total1939-1941, 1944, 1946-19509220.0241%19

AFL: 4,729th player to appear, 2,577th most games played, 7,827th most goals kickedFootscray: 252nd player to appear, 141st most games played, 638th most goals kicked

New Zealand-born Marty McDonnell played just 92 VFL games in a war interrupted career but was one of the finest defenders of his era. Selected to represent the 'Big V' on eight occasions, McDonnell was originally recruited from one of Footscray's richest talent reservoirs, the Footscray District Football League, where he had played for West Footscray.

From his very first VFL game in 1939, McDonnell demonstrated an unflappable maturity beyond his years and while he may never have been exactly a household name he went on to serve both his club and state with distinction. Had it not been for the intervention of the war he might now be remembered as one of the VFL's greatest ever defenders.

From 1960 to 1963 McDonnell coached South Fremantle but he was unable to get his team beyond the first semi final, for which they qualified twice during his time at the helm.

Author - John Devaney


Full Points Footy Publications


* Behinds calculated from the 1965 season on.
+ Score at the end of extra time.