Yesterday I received this email from an anonymous source. I have republished it here in full for the benefit of A-League fans and to promote discourse on this issue.
Dear A-League Club Chairmen,
As you are no doubt aware our exclusive television rights deal with Fox runs out next year. I know we have had our differences in the past few years but I really need a big, big favour.
The very reason I was appointed CEO of the FFA was due to my ability to bring home the bacon with the new TV rights deals.
Check out my whiz-bang spiel printed in Daily Telegraph on TV innovation in the A-League.
“The experience for the TV viewer watching Australian sport has changed rapidly in the past few years. Football needs to embrace these trends to win our fair share of the audience in a highly competitive sports market.
New broadcast technology allows for innovations that take the viewer closer to the action and behind the scenes. They are new ways to tell the great stories and drama of a football match. The A-League has started to embrace these opportunities.”
Pretty impressive, don’t you think?
Anyway, I have been chatting to some of the producers at Fox Sports and they reckon I will be able to get some extra coin if you allow them to invade the privacy of the manager and his players in the dressing room.
We at the FFA think it’s a brilliant idea.
Fox Sports will set up microphones and cameras in the dressing room in order broadcast the manager’s address and players chatting to each other. The A-League is family friendly product and to meet this requirement Fox Sports will put in a small delay to allow for the bleeping out of foul language.
In order to boost the value of this innovation I am requesting Sydney FC and Melbourne Heart not to appoint foreign managers next season. What we need right now is style in the dressing room. Style on the football pitch will have to take a backseat.
For this to work we need managers fluent in the English language.
Neil Warnock is a perfect example.
We tested the bleeper on him and he passed with flying colours.
You will also be pleased to know that in my ceaseless pursuit to add value to the new TV deal I have spoken with the producers of Big Brother. They reckon I can get the A-League on free to air by allowing them to make a version “Up Late” by selling them the footage of the boys in the showers and the managers giving their team a bollocking with the bleeper off.
As you very well know gentlemen: “There is no business like show business.”
So if you want to receive the biggest dividend possible to fund your cash strapped club then I implore you to get your managers and players to sign their privacy away.
My legacy is in your hands.
Athas Zafiris is on Twitter @ArtSapphire