Clubs dismiss claims of FFA pledge to hand over running of A-League

Claims that Football Federation Australia are set to hand over the running of the A-League to the clubs have been called into question by a leading club source.

A-League and FFA logos

Source: Hyundai A-League, FFA

A News Ltd report stated that Whitman Square was ready to cave into pressure from the 10 owners by granting them full autonomy to govern the competition in an imminent separation of powers.

The report comes in the wake of a nearly four-hour Valentine's Day meeting between FFA chairman Steven Lowy and his CEO David Gallop with club chiefs, who are also demanding a rising of the annual grant to clubs to $6 million.

But, after learning of the claims and a purported time frame for separation of as early as next season, a leading club source said: "This is not my understanding of the situation ... what was said by FFA in the meeting was that they would look at new ownership structures for the league in the future, whatever that means.

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"No time frame was given at all, so this is news to me."

The article stated that FFA had conceded that the A-League must be separated "to grow the value of the club licenses and entice more investors."



Though the claims will resonate with those who view an independent A-League as a logical next step, the club source cautioned: "FFA stated that they believe the current model isn't workable, and everyone agrees with that.

"They also said in the meeting they needed a model that would attract greater investment.

"But, as there is no time frame or detail, it's like somebody saying you're going to get married in the future.

"You may, or you may not, and it could take 20 years.

"It's absolutely not the case that the clubs have been told that they will (imminently) be running the competition.

"If FFA had said 'we're working on an ownership model that's going to transform the league and start in the 2018-2019 season, and this is the kind of thing we're looking at' then we'd have been excited by it. That's not what happened."

The source did confirm that the clubs had rejected a vote hike from one to three in an expanded FFA Congress comprising 17 votes, with "special interests" like referees and Beach Soccer also given a say in the election of the FFA board, under the proposals.


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3 min read
Published 15 February 2017 at 9:12pm
By Dave Lewis