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AFL could shift Sydney finals games to SCG

AAP logoAAP 22/08/2016

Could ANZ Stadium have seen the last of AFL football?

The Olympic stadium was stripped of regular-season matches in an agreement that suited the part-time tenants earlier in the year.

The Homebush venue has been retained in place for any Swans finals, as part of a separate deal with the AFL.

The AFL website reports negotiations to move matches away from the maligned stadium are ongoing, with the real prospect of Sydney's finals to be played at the SCG.

There's not really a competitive advantage to be gained by the Swans, with similar records at both venues.

Their all-time regular season winning record at Homebush is 59.23 percent, compared with 59.33 per cent at the SCG.

The finals winning record at both venues is 80 per cent - from 10 matches at ANZ Stadium and 5 at the SCG.

But in the past three seasons, the Swans have made the Test cricket venue one of football's most formidable away days.

In the past 25 matches Sydney have lost just four times, and only once by more than a kick.

An AFL spokesman would not commment on the matter, saying only that it had a contract in place with ANZ Stadium.

The Olympic venue, used primarily as a rugby league stadium through the year, has come in for criticism for the quality of its playing surface for AFL.

It would not be utilised for a Greater Western Sydney home final, unless the Giants are drawn against the Swans.

The AFL is preparing to schedule any Giants home fixtures at the smaller Spotless Stadium next door to ANZ Stadium.

Leon Cameron's side have played eight games at Spotless Stadium and three at Canberra's Manuka Oval in 2016.

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