Wollongong Wolves FC

The club was founded in 1980 as Wollongong City specifically to compete in the National Soccer League (NSL). The club joined the competition in the 1981 season, in which they finished in 11th position. The club was relegated from the NSL after the 1986 season, as the league reduced in size for the 1987 season. During 1987, Wollongong competed in the New South Wales First Division, where they were crowned both premiers and champions.

The club returned to the NSL in the 1988 season where they were crowned NSL premiers. However, the honour would be he last major title the club would receive for 11 years.

​In 1996, the club renamed to Wollongong Wolves. In the 199/2000 season the team finished the league in second position and after winning their semi-final match 2–1 against Carlton, Wolves were matched-up against Perth Glory in the 2000 NSL Grand Final. The grand final match went down as one of the best comebacks ever seen in Australian football. At half time Perth Glory were leading 3–0, but at 56 minutes the Wolves found a goal through Scott Chipperfield to make it 3–1. Matt Horsley gave the Wolves a sniff at a come back when he put the ball in the back of the net in the 69th minute, but it wasn’t until Paul Reid pulled the game right back when his strike in the 89th minute made the score line 3–3. After no goals were scored in extra time, the game was forced into a penalty shoot out. Wolves goalkeeper, Les Pogliacomi, pulled off two saves to win the match 7–6 on penalties and give the club’s first nation championship title.

The Wolves followed up their past season win by again placing second in the 2000/2001 season. After downing South Melbourne 2–1 in a semi-final match, the Wolves found themselves in a second consecutive NSL Grand Final. The Wolves earned the right to host the grand final for 2001, However, it was decided by Soccer Australia that the final would be moved from Wollongong and instead be played at Parramatta Stadium. The reason cited was that the 20,000 capacity at WIN Stadium, Wollongong was not large enough to host such an event. Ironically, the crowd attendance for the match was 13,400. The Wolves went on to claim their second NSL title and qualify for the 2001 Oceania Club Championship, defeating their semi-final opponents, South Melbourne, 2–1. Stuart Young and Sasho Petrovski were among the goal-scorers for the Wolves, scoring on the 56th and 57th minute marks.

In the 2001 Oceania Club Championship, the Wolves beating Tafea of Vanuatu 1–0 in the final. The Oceania Club Championship title, however, did not lead to them playing in the 2001 FIFA Club World Championship which was scheduled to be played in Spain, as FIFA had cancelled it due to financial reasons.

​After the demise of the national competition, the NSL, the Wolves moved into the NSW Premier League in the 2004–05 season. In 2007, Wollongong Wolves changed its name to Wollongong FC and won the Waratah Cup. The club secured a grand final win in the 2008 season.

However, the win didn’t prevent a financial crisis later in the year. The club had showed many financial losses including AU$240,000 in debts and losses of players and coaches. It was later announced that the club would cease to exist and a new community organisation would be formed to ensure money problems would not plague the club in the future. The club was re-branded as Wollongong Community FC, a not for profit organisation, run and owned by the community.

After a dismal 2009 season, Wollongong Community FC requested a name change back to the former “Wolves” moniker, with the formal request being approved in November 2009, and the name South Coast Wolves adopted in 2010.

The Wolves competed in the inaugural 2014 FFA Cup, where they were eliminated from the round of 32 by Central Coast Mariners 1–0 in front of a crowd of 5,238 at WIN Stadium.

In July 2015, as part of the club’s 35th year anniversary celebrations, it was announced that along with a brand new club logo, the name of the club would also change from South Coast Wolves back to Wollongong Wolves. These changes will be brought in for the 2016 season onwards.

Club Honours

  • Oceanic Champions League Champions 2001
  • NSL Champions 1999-00, 2000-01
  • NSL Premiers 1998
  • New South Wales Champions 1987, 2008
  • New South Wales Premiers 1987

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