AAFC INVITED TO CONTINUE DIALOGUE
The Association of Australian Football Clubs (AAFC) are encouraged by their meeting with representatives of FIFA, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and FFA in Sydney this morning.
AAFC was represented by its Chairman Rabieh Krayem, director Gino Marra, and advisors Tom Kalas and Nick Galatas.
Krayem described the almost 90-minute discussion, which was also attended by FFA Chairman Steven Lowy, CEO David Gallop and other FFA executives, as constructive for all parties.
“What is heartening for our member clubs is that this is just the beginning of an ongoing dialogue with FIFA, the AFC and FFA.
“FIFA and the AFC have a good understanding of the role NPL (national premier league) clubs play in the Australian football ecosystem.
“We were able to explain that we have 118 member clubs, which equates to about 1,200 male and female senior and junior teams. Collectively, our clubs contribute around $4 million each year to FFA and state federation revenue.
“Our clubs have spent about $300 million on the game in the five years since our establishment implementing the NPL player pathway programs.”
Krayem said there was also discussion around the operation of a self-funding, self-sustaining second division.
Both Lowy and Gallop said that a second division would be "ideally" introduced provided there is a financially viable model. They indicated they look forward to considering AAFC’s proposal for its introduction, due to be finalised at the end of October.
“We were able to advise FFA that we’re not looking at a model that will cost money, but one that will be self-funding.
“In an ideal world, we could be contributing even more to their revenue bucket!" Krayem said.
“We let them know that we’re currently working on various financial models with a view to having a preferred model by the end of October.
“In this regard, we’re delighted with the offer by the A-League clubs and the PFA to assist us by sharing their data to inform our modeling.”
Krayem said that whatever the outcome of the remainder of the meeting, one thing is certain from AAFC’s perspective – that they’re here to stay.
“We appreciated the opportunity to meet with FIFA, AFC and FFA and put our case to them. We’re confident that they recognise we have credibility, that they’re willing to listen to what we have to say, and to assist in what we’re striving for to help advance football in Australia.”
AAFC's presentation to FIFA, the AFC and FFA is here.