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Joey47
Joey47
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Location : Nations Capital
Other football teams : Leeds United, Reggina Calcio
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The FFA is cutting it very fine Empty The FFA is cutting it very fine

Wed Sep 09, 2009 7:59 am
The FFA is cutting it very fine

Michael Cockerill
September 9, 2009

THE football folk of the western suburbs of Sydney believe they're the heartland of the game. Over the years, more teams, more players, and more coaches, have emerged from the multi-cultural melting pot west of Woodville Road than anywhere else in the country. So how come it's so hard to get an A-League bid up and running?

It's a question which has occupied the brains trust of Football Federation Australia for more than two years. A year ago, it became a cause celebre for Frank Lowy when he made it clear he expected to see a team in western Sydney by 2010. As recently as last month, the FFA chairman maintained the governing body wasn't getting ''cold feet'' on expansion.

In the past week, however, it's all gone pear-shaped out in the west. And while FFA chief executive Ben Buckley insists the situation can still be retrieved, it's looking like a long shot. So what's gone wrong?

Let's look first at the timetable for expansion. A timetable set by the FFA, but unquestionably driven - at least in part - by the Asian Football Confederation. Australia wants more spots in the Asian Champions League and to get them it needs more teams. The ACL allocations will be reviewed next year and a 12-team league gives Australia the chance of getting four qualifying berths in 2011. That's the same as Iran, Saudi Arabia, Japan, China and South Korea. As it stands, Australia only gets two, much to the frustration of the FFA. Especially as Australia, for what it's worth, is currently the highest-ranked nation in Asia.

Whatever the case, it means the timetable is perhaps tighter than it needs to be. And having created the expectation there will be 12 teams next year, it's going to be hard for the FFA to explain why there might not be. A failure, perceived or otherwise, doesn't bode well. And don't think the rival codes - still miffed by what they see as the Federal Government's recent largesse towards the game - won't be rubbing salt into the wound.

It's a wound partly of the FFA's own making. On May 28 Joe Meissner went to FFA headquarters with his bid and was told to expect a decision within a fortnight. Three postponements later, he was finally given the green light. But by then personal issues had emerged and last week he withdrew. For his 11th-hour retreat, Meissner will have to cop the flak. But he's adamant that if not for the delays he wouldn't have backed out. ''Let's just say if they had given me the licence, even a provisional one, three months ago, I would have been committed,'' he said yesterday. ''And I would have made it work.''

At the same time as Meissner was kept waiting, a rival bid fronted - but not financed - by Socceroos skipper Lucas Neill, was kept in the race. It was a bid organised by Neill's agent, Paddy Dominguez. As we now know, this bid was using Michael McGurk to find the money. McGurk, variously described as a loan shark and a standover man, was shot dead in the driveway of his Cremorne home last week. If Meissner was seen as too colourful by some within the FFA, what must they make of Dominguez's choice of partners?

Either way, that's two bids down. Can the FFA make it third time lucky? Buckley reckons he's still got until the end of this month, when the transfer window reopens. That's cutting it fine. Perhaps too fine. In a start-up market such as Wellington, the three-month lead-up given to the Phoenix worked because it was carried by the novelty factor. But there's no novelty factor for professional football in the western suburbs of Sydney.

At one stage, in the old NSL, there were six teams within a 25 kilometre radius of Parramatta. This is arguably the most mature market in the country. For an A-League team to work it has to prove its credibility to some of the most demanding fans in the nation. And to give itself any chance of doing that, it needs time. Let's hope it's not already too late.

http://www.smh.com.au/news/sport/football/the-ffa-is-cutting-it-very-fine/2009/09/08/1252201224076.html?page=fullpage
Chris1822
Chris1822
Posts : 1782
Join date : 2009-04-14
Other football teams : reggina, everton any other club that has an aussie

The FFA is cutting it very fine Empty Re: The FFA is cutting it very fine

Wed Sep 09, 2009 4:21 pm
once again no mention of canberra.

oh dear let's just get this expansion round over so we'll have some priority.
Alex351
Alex351
Posts : 464
Join date : 2009-04-21
Location : Canberra
Other football teams : Real Madrid, Reading and Southport

The FFA is cutting it very fine Empty Re: The FFA is cutting it very fine

Wed Sep 09, 2009 4:24 pm
What the hell, Ben Buckly is actually stupid,

WE"RE READY FOR A TEAM IN CANBERRA, Exclaim Rant
JohnLovesCanberraUnited
JohnLovesCanberraUnited
Posts : 1054
Join date : 2009-04-21
Location : Canberra
Other football teams : Leeds United, AFC Wimbledon

The FFA is cutting it very fine Empty Re: The FFA is cutting it very fine

Sat Sep 12, 2009 9:55 am
it's mike COCKerill.... Rant wanker
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The FFA is cutting it very fine Empty Re: The FFA is cutting it very fine

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