Stephen Silvagni

Stephen Silvagni (born 31 May 1967) is a former Australian rules footballer who represented Carlton in the Australian Football League (AFL).

Stephen Silvagni
Silvagni in September 2009
Personal information
Nickname(s) Sos
Date of birth (1967-05-31) 31 May 1967
Place of birth Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Original team(s) Marcellin College
Height 194 cm (6 ft 4 in)
Weight 95 kg (209 lb)
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
19852001 Carlton 312 (202)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 2001.
Career highlights
Sources: AFL Tables,

As the second member of three generations of Silvagni's represent the Blues, he is regarded as one of the greatest ever full-backs to play the game and was named as full-back in the AFL Team of the Century and is an inductee in the Australian Football Hall of Fame.[1] Prior to 1985 he captained the undefeated Marcellin College 1st XVIII that won both the 1984 Associated Grammar Schools premiership,[2] and the coveted Herald Shield Cup then [3] played under lights at Waverley Park.

He is widely known by his nickname, "SOS" (pronounced "Soss"), standing for "Son of Serge", referring to his father, Sergio Silvagni, another great Carlton player.[4]

After retiring from football, Silvagni has worked as an assistant coach and list manager at several AFL clubs.[5][6] He is currently the list manager at Carlton Football Club.

VFL/AFL career

Playing career

Silvagni's defensive skills were renowned and earned him the status as a true clubman at Carlton. In 1996's AFL Team of the Century, Silvagni had the honour of being named at full-back. A title he was bestowed with after it was discovered that players not already in the AFL Hall of Fame were ineligible for selection at the time meaning that players of the quality of David Dench from North Melbourne and Geoff Southby from Carlton two of the games finest Fullbacks were excluded from the selection process even though they later gained entry into the AFL Hall of Fame.[7] He retained the title as the best full-back for four years in succession, although he was also known for his marking and goalkicking ability when playing at the opposite end of the ground in the full-forward position at times, even kicking a bag of 10 goals in Round 16, 1993 against the Fitzroy Lions.

Possibly his finest game was in the 1995 AFL Grand Final where he kept Geelong legend Gary Ablett goalless for the entire game.[8]

In addition to Silvagni's blanketing tactics, he was also a renowned high-flyer, taking out the Mark of the Year in 1988. However, when one such mark led to an ankle injury, the high-flying aspect of his game largely disappeared.

A year after his retirement at the end of the 2001 season he announced that he would make a comeback to assist Carlton, following their penalties for salary cap infringements. He however changed his mind soon after and was not a listed player for the 2003 season.[9]

Silvangi also played as goalkeeper for the Australian International Rules team on several occasions, and won the inaugural Jim Stynes Medal in 1998.

Silvagni was a five time All-Australian, being selected in 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997 and 1999.

Post-playing career

After retiring from playing, Silvagni worked as an assistant coach at four AFL clubs, Collingwood, Sydney, Western Bulldogs, and most recently St Kilda from 2007 until the end of 2010.[5] In 2011, Silvagni took on the role of list manager with the fledgling Greater Western Sydney Giants.[6] He returned to Carlton as list manager in 2015, and remains there as of 2019; he was notably active in recruiting former GWS players to Carlton, with nine former GWS players shifting to Carlton in Silvagni's first three recruiting years.[10] He was expected to leave the club following the 2019 AFL season.[11]


 G  Goals  B  Behinds  K  Kicks  H  Handballs  D  Disposals  M  Marks  T  Tackles
Season Team No. Games G B K H D M T G B K H D M T Votes
Totals Averages (per game)
1985 Carlton 117101336119461N/A0.
1986 Carlton 11398874212945N/A0.
1987 Carlton 115249995415350211.
1988 Carlton 12412121879928674310.
1989 Carlton 168850186824101.
1990 Carlton 12257206142348109510.
1991 Carlton 1934926816048180.30.410.27.617.85.32.06
1992 Carlton 1122812703410443112.
1993 Carlton 122201418511830391320.
1994 Carlton 1244317013330376400.
1995 Carlton 124782139130482290.
1996 Carlton 124641739226575440.
1997 Carlton 11825131566622276201.
1998 Carlton 11815141665922561340.
1999 Carlton 1241520216117333108250.
2000 Carlton 1205117710528289330.
2001 Carlton 1201513172107279111260.
Career 312 202 150 2552 1406 3958 1223 425 0.6 0.5 8.2 4.5 12.7 3.9 1.5 69

Personal life

Stephen Silvagni married Australian television celebrity Jo Bailey in 1996, and they have three sons.[13] Their eldest son Jack was drafted by the Carlton Football Club in 2015. He played his first match in round 15, 2016 vs Collingwood.[14] Their second son Ben, was also drafted by the Carlton Football Club in the 2018 AFL draft.

Since retiring from playing football he has worked in the media as a guest football commentator.[5]

Carlton Football Club key defender Alex Silvagni is Stephen's second cousin. (Alex's father Eric and Stephen's father Sergio are first cousins.)[15]

See also


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