Sydney Football Stadium usually hosts both NRL semi finals and one preliminary final, and also held the annual pre-season Charity Shield football match between South Sydney and St George Illawarra for a number of years. All NSWRL / ARL Rugby League Grand Finals as well as the first Grand Final under the NRL banner were played there between 1988 and 1998.
Prior to its construction, major events were usually held at the Sydney Cricket Ground, as it was the largest stadium in Sydney. But the SCG, being an oval field, was not considered ideal for sports requiring a rectangular field like soccer, rugby league and rugby union, although it had been used many times for such events.
The Sydney Football Stadium has been the Sydney Roosters' home ground since 1988. It is built on the site of the old Sydney Sports Ground which served as the Roosters home ground for decades, and the old SCG No 2 which served as a secondary ground for some state cricket matches, an additional training ground, and athletics. Both grounds were demolished in 1986 to make way for the SFS.
The final Grand Final played at the SFS was the 1998 NRL Grand Final between Canterbury and Brisbane. In front of 40,857 fans, the Broncos ran out easy 38-12 winners to win their 4th premiership from four Grand Final appearances. Broncos forward Gordon Tallis winning the Clive Churchill Medal.
Two standout State Of Origin matches in which QLD triumphed over NSW with last-minute victories in 1994 and 1998, as well as Michael O'Connor's sideline conversion in driving rain for a NSW win in Game 2 of the 1991 series.
The Sydney Football Stadium has been the venue of some of Australian sport's greatest matches and moments. The final of the 1993 World Youth Cup between Brazil and Ghana was also held at the SFS, Brazil won 2-1. The 1994 FIFA World Cup qualifier between Australia and Argentina featuring Argentine association football legend Diego Maradona, finishing in a 1-1 draw with goals to Aurelio Vidmar for Australia and Abel Balbo for Argentina. This match retains the record attendance at the SFS and many more were actually in attendance as the gates were thrown open close to kick-off as a safety measure.
In 2002, the naming rights were purchased by Aussie Home Loans in a 5 year + 5 year deal. Due to this, the stadium was renamed Aussie Stadium. On 7 July 2007 the stadium reverted to its original Sydney Football Stadium name after Aussie Home Loans and the SCG Trust mutually elected not to extend the naming rights deal.
In 2012 Sydney Cricket Ground Trust announced a master plan to redevelopment Sydney Football Stadium, as well as Sydney Cricket Ground and the surrounding area, with a vision "for the SCG and Allianz Stadium is to create an exciting new concept for Sydney’s central sporting precinct - a revitalised, world-class, sports and recreation facility for NSW and Australia". The development of Sydney Football Stadium will include a new fully covered roof and a new LED façade mesh for the stadium which would allow the exterior to change colours to suit the home team, similar to Allianz Arena. As well, development to the surrounding area would include a new public plaza between the Sydney Cricket Ground and Sydney Football Stadium, new transport infrastructure, new underground car parks (4,100 cars) and develop the surrounding park-land. The scheduled start date for the project will commence after the completion of the Sydney Cricket Ground redevelopment, in January 2014.
1993: Argentinian superstar Diego Maradona played here in the World Cup qualifier against Australia, in which the match was drawn 1-1. As of 2014, the attendance of 43,967 remains the stadiums largest for a sporting event.
19 December 1997: representatives of clubs affiliated with the Australian Rugby League gathered at the SFS to decide whether to accept News Limited's offer of a settlement with the breakaway 'Super League' - eventually voting in favour by 36 votes to 4.
* Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs and Canberra Raiders hold the record for the most Grand Final appearances at the stadium with four each. The Bulldogs appeared as Canterbury-Bankstown in 1988 and 1994, as the Sydney Bulldogs in 1995 and as the Canterbury Bulldogs in 1998
* Canberra and the Brisbane Broncos hold the record for most Grand Final wins at the stadium with three each.
* Brisbane and the Newcastle Knights are the only teams to win each of their Grand Finals played at the stadium.
* St George and Balmain are the only clubs who failed to win in any of their Grand Final appearances at the stadium.
* The 1997 Grand Final attendance of 42,482 remains the record rugby league crowd at the stadium and the third largest sporting attendance in the stadiums 26 year history.
* Canterbury-Bankstown appeared in the first and last Grand Finals at the SFS.
* Brisbane's 24 point win over Canterbury-Bankstown in 1998 is the biggest Grand Final winning margin at the SFS. Canberra's 4 point win over Penrith in 1990 is the smallest winning margin.
Since the A-League's first season in 2006, the Sydney Football Stadium has hosted the A-League Grand Final on three occasions, including the inaugural Grand Final between Sydney FC and the Central Coast Mariners.
Sydney Football Stadium can be accessed by car, public transport and by walking. The nearest train station is Central Station, 3 kilometers away. On event days, express shuttle buses run every five minutes from Chalmers St at Central Station to Moore Park. The buses use special bus only lanes to ensure a speedy trip.