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Volume 7 No. 149
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A-League Bidders Concerned FFA Will Give Spots To Richest Donors

Concerns "are growing among some A-League expansion bidders" that Football Federation Australia will opt for the consortiums that "pledge the most money upfront," after several were advised to offer higher bids by FFA’s corporate advisers, according to Tom Smithies of the Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH. But A-League execs insist that "all bids which are deemed financially viable will be assessed on their merits when the final decision is made next month." With the governing body’s new board "poised to rubberstamp the addition of two new teams for next season" at its first meeting on Dec. 12, FFA management will recommend two of six bids whose offers are understood to "span a broad range in value" from A$10M ($7.2M) to A$20M ($14.5M). All bidders have been told that the license fees they pay "will have to cover all of the running costs of the new teams for the four years until a new broadcast deal is signed," though FFA will receive a "small amount more" from its current TV deal in two years’ time if the league expands. Some expansion bidders are believed to have "offered an added premium in the hope of securing" a license, while others have been asked if they "can raise their bids" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 11/26).