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A-League clubs reject improved FFA deal

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 2/05/2017 Ben McKay and Emma Kemp

A-League clubs have walked out of a meeting with Football Federation Australia after rejecting a redistribution offer from head office.

There appears to be no end in sight to the lengthy stoush between FFA and the clubs, who are fighting for more funding and extra seats at the sport's key decision-making table.

Adelaide United chairman Greg Griffin, speaking on behalf of his colleagues, said clubs had unanimously turned down an increased annual distribution of $3.25 million.

"We have worked in good faith for the last eighteen months to achieve a distribution that will deliver a sustainable future for the league," he said.

"With this proposal the FFA has shown its disregard for the A-League and those who have invested in it. The clubs are no longer prepared to fund the FFA through annual club losses.

"This is yet another example of the need for reform of the governance and management of our game and things must change now."

It's understood FFA chairman Steven Lowy is overseas and was not at the meeting.

FFA has been contacted for comment.

Presently, the league doles out an annual amount to clubs corresponding with the A-League salary cap - which in 2016/17 was $2.6 million.

Under the terms of the CBA, the salary cap will rise to at least $2.92 million in 2017/18, owing to the league's bumper $57.6 million-a-year broadcast deal with Fox Sports.

The clubs are eager for a greater share of that pie than the $32.5 million currently on offer.

The Australian Professional Football Clubs Association (APFCA) says the current offer means clubs will receive less than half of the revenues generated by the league.

Having argued for redistributions above and beyond the total salary cap amount, the clubs were aghast to learn that the offer from FFA would only barely cover A-League, W-League, NPL and NYL player wages.

Clubs see these talks as time to secure a genuine return on their investments over the first 12 years of the league, where almost all club owners have worn significant losses on their investments.

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