Menu
Sport

FIFA puts hold on FFA takeover strategy

FFA chairman Steven Lowy speaks at a media conference.
FFA chairman Steven Lowy speaks at a media conference. DAVID MOIR

FOOTBALL: The threat of FIFA taking over the running of Australian football has been put on hold after the world governing body agreed to establish a "working group” to map out the future of the game here.

After Football Federation Australia chairman Steven Lowy failed to get his reform model passed last week, FIFA decided to send its own staff here in the new year to work with the bitterly opposed parties in the battle for control of the game.

In a move that effectively kicks the issue of Australian football governance into the long grass, FIFA's member associations committee agreed to continue a process already nearly two years old.

Despite relations between the A-League clubs, some of the state federations and FFA having become increasingly acrimonious, FIFA will still attempt to engineer a compromise over the power structure at the head of the game.

FFA chairman Steven Lowy (left) speaks with FFA CEO David Gallop.
FFA chairman Steven Lowy (left) speaks with FFA CEO David Gallop. DAVID MOIR

The working group does not appear designed for a quick resolution, with initial meetings planned merely to establish its "terms of reference”, including who will actually be in it.

Had FIFA followed through on its threat to sack Lowy's board and put in place its own "normalisation committee”, that would have led to FIFA-appointed officials executing decisions such as appointing the new Socceroos coach.

The long-running dispute has centred on FFA's Congress, the annual body that elects FFA's directors, which FIFA has decreed is not democratic enough and needs to give more say to the A-League clubs, the players' union and the women's game.

Lowy has fought a battle to limit the number of votes allocated to the clubs, who in turn have accused him of trying to retain control of the game's future.

Steven Lowy (right) with former Socceroos head coach Ange Postecoglou.
Steven Lowy (right) with former Socceroos head coach Ange Postecoglou. DAVID MOIR

"FIFA'S ruling gives all of us a chance to take a fresh look at how the Congress can best represent the Australian football community, with the direct involvement of FIFA and AFC officials in that process,” Lowy said in a statement.

"In a wider sense, this process will enable all Australian stakeholders to work together on a shared vision for our game at every level.

"In the meantime, FFA will ... engage with stakeholders on a new league operating model and expansion of the A-League as soon as possible, continue its work ... on Australia's bid for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup, (and) appoint a new head coach for the Socceroos.”

Topics:  a-league congress fifa football federation australia


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Baby born 10 weeks premature on cruise ship

P&O Cruises' New-look Pacific Dawn Sails into Brisbane (port side).

Extra passenger arrives on a cruise ship docked in Abel Point

Clippers lock in music talents

DYNAMIC DUO: Busby Mar ou will perform at the Clipper Race Carnival.

Clipper race locks in music legends.

Cut Snake check into Airlie

THE BOYS: Cut Snake on tour will play at Magnums Hotel Tonight.

Dance music duo Cut Snake will bring the party to Magnums Hotel

Local Partners