In a major step toward diversifying and integrating competition across Australia, FFA have announced via press release, a preliminary proposal to create what will for now be known as the FFA Cup. Designed to be like Britain's FA Cup or America's US Open Cup, the FFA Cup would involve amateur, National Premier Leagues and A-League clubs, each entering the tournament on successive stages. The tentative dates plan for the inaugural final to take place in December 2014. The winner will be granted a spot in the 2015 Asian Champions League.
The proposal has been agreed upon, crucially, by all ten A-League clubs, including New Zealand's Wellington Phoenix. While the majority of clubs involved in each tournament will clearly be lower tiered teams, without the inclusion of the top flight, such a tournament would be difficult to market to a national audience. Now, it seems the wishes of those pushing such an idea for the past few years have coalesced into a concrete idea that will come to fruition once the business side has been established.
FFA's CEO David Gallop explains:
"The idea of the FFA Cup has captured the imagination of the football community and there's a huge groundswell of support. Everyone in the game is keen for this concept to come to life, but the prudent way forward is to ensure the right commercial and organizational foundations are in place. FFA management now has a mandate to conclude the many positive talks we've had with broadcasters, sponsors and commercial partners."