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Volume 7 No. 95
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Football NSW Says Stakeholders Could Fund FIFA Women's World Cup Bid

Football NSW Chair Anter Isaac said that Australian football stakeholders "will fund the Women's World Cup bid themselves if the money is not forthcoming from the federal government," according to Emma Kemp of the AAP. Isaac revealed he "took time last week to explain to the NSW government the acrimonious fallout" that could see FIFA in charge of Australian football by the end of the week. He received "concerned feedback" from the office of NSW Sports Minister Stuart Ayres that the predicament "could put at risk funding for the Women's World Cup bid." It follows a warning last month from Ayres' federal counterpart, Greg Hunt, that the government "might withhold" A$4M ($3M) in funding for the '23 bid should FIFA "step in and disband" the Football Federation Australia board. Should that occur, Isaac pledged the stakeholders -- comprising the state federations, A-League clubs and players' union -- "would dip into their pockets to make it happen." Isaac said, "If the government didn't have confidence in the way football is being governed at the moment, then they're within their rights to withdraw any funding that they've committed to. I also added to them that, not withstanding that, if that was the view of government, then the stakeholders would invest and fund the Women's World Cup bid themselves because we're absolutely committed to women's football and the prosperity of football. If government want to come on board, they're more than welcome. If they're not, we'll wipe our brows and get on with the job" (AAP, 12/5). 

NO DECISION YET: Kemp also reported a day after FIFA's member associations committee met to discuss the issue, FFA's execs "remained in the dark over its future." It comes as FFA Chair Steven Lowy invited back to the negotiating table the A-League clubs he "slammed as money and power hungry last week," in a bid to reopen “constructive dialogue” about a new top-flight operating model. More than four months ago, Lowy "shut down joint talks on the matter in retaliation to the clubs’ threats of legal action seeking to force FFA to reveal its finances" (AAP, 12/5).

COACH SELECTION: In Melbourne, Michael Lynch reported former England Manager Sven-Göran Eriksson is the "latest name to be flagged as a short or perhaps long-term fix for the Socceroos." He joins the likes of Marcelo Bielsa, Gianni De Biasi, Christoph Daum, Jürgen Klinsmann, Guus Hiddink and former Serbia coach Slavoljub Muslin as "high-profile, experienced managers who have been mentioned in dispatches as potential candidates for the Socceroos' top job in recent days." Those are "just the foreign contenders." Graham Arnold, Tony Popovic, John Aloisi and Kevin Muscat have "also been put in the frame as potential successors to Ange Postecoglou" (THE AGE, 12/5).

FAMILIAR FACES: In Sydney, Matt Bungard reported FFA will "turn to a trio of Socceroos legends to assist in appointing the manager" who will lead Australia through the 2018 World Cup. Three members of Australia's so-called "golden generation" -- Mark Bresciano, Stan Lazaridis and Mark Schwarzer -- are "among a panel of experts who will advise the FFA on the coaching hire," along with FFA Head of National Performance Luke Casserly, Socceroos assistant coach Ante Milicic (both are former Socceroos), FFA National Technical Dir Eric Abrams and Chief Medical Officer Mark Jones. It is expected that two int'l names "will join this panel and will be named in the coming days" (SMH, 12/5).