FFA CEO Gallop Says Australian FA Cup Ready To Kick Off Within Next 12 Months
Football Federation Australia CEO David Gallop revealed that the FFA "intends to have an FA Cup-style knockout competition up and running next year with a projected final on Australia Day in 2015," according to Jeffery & Mason of THE AUSTRALIAN. Gallop said that FFA officials "were still working out the details but the FFA Cup was scheduled to begin in just 12 months, with the lower-ranked teams in action first and the A-League teams joining in September-October next year when their regular season begins." About 700 teams from Australia "are expected to compete, ranging from the A-League to state league teams and even amateur teams." Gallop warned that there "were logistical and financial challenges to be overcome before the competition could go ahead." He said, "We need to make sure it works commercially. But the concept of combining the grassroots and the elite level has obvious appeal" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 4/11).
AN OLD MODEL: REUTERS' Patrick Johnston reported the tournament is based on England's FA Cup model. The English FA Cup, the oldest association football tournament in the world, "has a straight knockout format open to both amateur and professional teams with sides from the Premier League given a bye to the third round." Australia's A-League "already combines both the league and knockout elements with the champions decided after a playoff series at the end of the regular season" (REUTERS, 4/10).