The A-League needs expansion before it’s too late

Mike Tuckerman Columnist

By Mike Tuckerman, Mike Tuckerman is a Roar Expert

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235 Have your say

    “Do you think Phil is going to come out and see his shadow?” “Punxsutawney Phil!” “That’s right, woodchuck chuckers it’s… Groundhog Day!”

    North America’s favourite rodent just predicted six more weeks of winter, but there was no word on his predictions for tonight’s clash between Melbourne Victory and Brisbane Roar.

    Not to worry – these two clubs have faced each other more than 40 times in the A-League, Besart Berisha has scored no less than seven competitive goals against Brisbane Roar including the winner in last year’s semi-final – and when Victory ended Roar keeper Michael Theo’s record run of clean sheets in 2010, his name was still Theoklitos.

    Besart Berisha tall

    (AAP Image/George Salpigtidis)

    Kevin Muscat and John Aloisi know each other so well they could probably swap hairstyles and still look familiar on the touchline.

    If you think you’ve seen this fixture before, well, you have. Over and over and over again.

    Weirdly enough, this is only the eighth meeting between the pair at AAMI Park, with the majority of the fixtures either taking place at Etihad Stadium or in Brisbane.

    So that’s something.

    If, however, you’re tired of seeing the same teams play each other on an endless cycle of repeat, unfortunately you’re out of luck.

    You’ll just have to console yourself with watching Melbourne City take on Sydney FC for at least the 25th time – including FFA Cup fixtures.

    Western Sydney’s rescheduled Round 7 fixture against Wellington Phoenix on Sunday means they’ll have faced the Kiwi side on January 13th, February 11th and again on March 10th of this year alone.

    And the pair faced off in the FFA Cup Round of 32 last August for good measure – with all four games set to take place across four different grounds.

    The roulette wheel of scheduling has spun up ANZ Stadium as the latest venue of choice for the eternal grudge match that is Western Sydney versus Wellington, where a Category A ticket will set you back a mere $38, plus a $6.90 handling fee.

    Don’t worry though. Football Federation Australia has got expansion sorted.

    “I don’t think we’ve lost enough ground because we’ve done all the work,” A-League head Greg O’Rourke told AAP sports reporter Murray Wenzel at the launch of the W-League finals on Monday.

    “The question is, when do we go into the public domain and ask for bidders?”

    Um, like, today?

    Or better yet, maybe get on the blower to Marty McFly and see if we can go back in time and kick off expansion proceedings when they were first needed about five years ago.

    Are Brisbane City in with a shout? Could Brisbane Strikers steal their thunder? Is Southern Expansion still a thing?

    Despite Wenzel’s pointed enquiry – and at the launch of the women’s finals, it was a question about the men’s game that garnered most of the media attention – we know no more officially about the prospect of expansion than we knew last week or the week before.

    That’s despite an excellent midweek podcast from The Daily Football Show in which they chatted to Brisbane City and Brisbane Strikers chairmen Rob Cavallucci and Bruce Atterton-Evans – where both men spoke passionately and intelligently about the prospect of their respective clubs joining the A-League.

    Vince Rugari then followed up Wenzel’s line of thought with a piece about “Brisbane pushing for a boutique football stadium” as part of Australia’s bid to host the 2023 Women’s World Cup.

    It’s an idea Brisbane Roar seem happy to support. Along with, it should be noted, the prospect of a much-needed Brisbane derby.

    So why are we waiting? What economic conditions will change between now and next year? And what difference would it make if expansion clubs were tried and failed?

    Could it be any worse than watching the same ten clubs play the same three fixtures ad infinitum?

    If the A-League is stale, then how could we describe FFA’s handling of expansion?

    With one word: moribund.

    Mike Tuckerman
    Mike Tuckerman

    Mike Tuckerman is a Sydney-born journalist and lifelong football fan. After lengthy stints watching the beautiful game in Germany and Japan, he settled in Brisbane, and has been a leading Roar football columnist since December 2008.

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    The Crowd Says (235)

    • February 9th 2018 @ 7:31am
      League table speaks said | February 9th 2018 @ 7:31am | ! Report

      The way to expand is to open the league to competition. That’s what engages the whole of the football family.

      Can you win an NPL national playoff series? You’re in.

      Promote enough teams to expand to 12 or 16. Then start with relegation and a second division.

      • February 9th 2018 @ 3:50pm
        Churchman72 said | February 9th 2018 @ 3:50pm | ! Report

        I’d like to get to 20 teams for a 38 game season giving each team 19 home games against different opponents. This provides enough opportunities for matchday revenue o keep the clubs afloat over the off season (see Roar dor exhibit A) and gives the players enough games to get to fitness levels equivalent to European leagues). It also gives each player 19 unique opponents with different attributes to deal with, making them more adaptable and better equipped to find solutions within their teams system, improving them as footballers. 14 teams is the immediate goal, building over time.

        Going to 12 teams doesn’t change the dynamic as it provides insufficient opponents to get rid of the third round, which dulls interest. You need at least a 28(?) game season to meet ACL qualification rules, so a 26 round competition plus finals meets this requirement.

        The expansion should focus on different areas, and the major metropolitan areas in Australia are so widely separated that expansion into one won’t affect demand in another (unless you’re into hopping onto planes to watch games every other week). So 10 to 14 in one go won’t result in any new teams treading on each others toes, but will massively increase the interest levels for both new and existing fans. Especially if you only get to see each opponent at a home game once during the regular season.

    • February 9th 2018 @ 7:48am
      mwm said | February 9th 2018 @ 7:48am | ! Report

      The FFA are to nervous on expansion due to our past, and they kind of have a point. Teams came and went willy nilly in the NSL that it became a joke of a competition. We also had ethnic conflict that they feel will return. With 2 divisions some of the clubs would have to be the old NSL powerhouses. The FFA feel if they let the reins go the a league will return to this type of system…. Hence the over cautious approach.

      Also football in Australia will never be the type of game that people on sports blogs like this want it to be. They desperately want it to be a carbon copy of the vibrant European game they grew up watching on tv and hearing from their dads, with p/r, no grand final, and supporter groups that chant like Europeans. Thate why there is so much anguish from people here about the FFA trying to sanitise the game vs ‘real supporters’.

      We should try to make football authentic to this country, and not be insecure about having a real league if we don’t have the same types of things that exist in a European league.

      • February 9th 2018 @ 8:01am
        Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:01am | ! Report

        There is no reason not to expand the current A league with time for those new clubs to grow .

        I take the Sydney swans example of growing for any club in a challenging environment…
        It can work if you do it properly with good people involved behind the scenes .

        Imagine 4 or 5 new A league clubs ……
        that’s a chance for abt 80 more Aussie’s to play with another 5-10 marquee players added to the competition.

        And the argument that there are not enough good Aussie players yet to fill these teams , just seems to suit non football fans narrative.
        …..the talent pool of current youth teams and semi professionals npl players will obviously improve when they become full time professionals.

        By the way …….There’s not enough good Aussie rules or rugby league players in Australia either to fill their 18 and 16 team competitions , but it didn’t stop expansion from those codes .

        • February 9th 2018 @ 8:16am
          reuster75 said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:16am | ! Report

          “I take the Sydney swans example of growing for any club in a challenging environment…
          It can work if you do it properly with good people involved behind the scenes .”
          You’re bang on the money with that statement. The most successful of the ‘expansion’ clubs has been Western Sydney because they had the right people in the right positions who not only had a feel for the game but more importantly had a feel for the community’s expectations. We need to identify the teams that have got the most community support behind them and help them to make the step up to the a-league. This way even if they struggle at first they’ll eventually succeed as they stand for more then just being an a-league club.

        • February 9th 2018 @ 2:38pm
          spruce moose said | February 9th 2018 @ 2:38pm | ! Report

          Praises AFL on one tab, rags on it the other…

          • February 9th 2018 @ 3:22pm
            Blue said | February 9th 2018 @ 3:22pm | ! Report

            It’s almost as if he’s talking about different topics, and the AFL can act badly sometimes and well sometimes. Remarkable…

            • February 9th 2018 @ 3:41pm
              Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 3:41pm | ! Report

              Mister spruce and blue

              I know that you are one and the same

              Here it is put simply for you .

              Sydney swans are a good example of afl done well with expansion

              Gold Coast suns losing 25 million a year is a bad example of expansion

              Comprende vous??

              • February 9th 2018 @ 5:56pm
                Mark said | February 9th 2018 @ 5:56pm | ! Report

                The Sydney Swans lost money hand over fist in their early years as well. The VFL/AFL resorted to some desperate measures to keep them alive.

                The lessons from the AFL’s expansions are that you can expand into loss making areas if you have alternative revenue that can make up for the losses. The Swans has private funding when the VFL/AFL couldn’t cover their losses. Now, the AFL generates enough money as a whole to support Gold Coast and GWS, as well as its other loss making clubs. The AFL can continue to support them even if it takes 20 years or more for them to become profitable.

                The FFA doesn’t have the resources to subsidise loss making teams indefinitely in the hope they will one day become profitable. They have to rely on private investors to do it. Understandably, looking at the market for professional football in Australia, stable long-term investors aren’t queuing up to fund new expansion teams.

              • Roar Guru

                February 10th 2018 @ 5:57am
                The_Wookie said | February 10th 2018 @ 5:57am | ! Report

                Close. The Swans were sold to private enterprise with the VFL/AFL covering losses and repossessing licenses until 1993 when the license was permanently returned to the AFL, where it remains.

              • February 10th 2018 @ 8:57am
                Kangajets said | February 10th 2018 @ 8:57am | ! Report

                Wookie

                I remember well the swans early years and crowds of 5000, that’s when they did expansion badly.

                What they have done in the 2000s has been excellent as an expansion club .

              • February 10th 2018 @ 10:10am
                Bilbo said | February 10th 2018 @ 10:10am | ! Report

                Again KJ? Remember 1986

        • February 9th 2018 @ 3:57pm
          Churchman72 said | February 9th 2018 @ 3:57pm | ! Report

          There are 350-400 Australians playing overseas, with only two or three dozen playing at a high level. A lot of players can be repatriated, with many better than those who stayed home. Away from the big leagues life can be tough for a professional football player and many would gladly come home to a professional league in their home country if there were enough opportunities to do so. The overseas contingent exceeds the numbers of Australians playing in the A League, enough to find sufficient players to fill the rosters of 4-5 teams without putting much of a dent in the overall number of players based overseas.

          • February 9th 2018 @ 8:46pm
            kanga-Rodriguez said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:46pm | ! Report

            Agreed

          • February 10th 2018 @ 7:10pm
            LuckyEddie said | February 10th 2018 @ 7:10pm | ! Report

            Maybe that’s because they are not very good players.

          • February 11th 2018 @ 2:46pm
            Tommo said | February 11th 2018 @ 2:46pm | ! Report

            Why would those 350 players come back to play in the A-League in front of crowds of 8,000. Remember there are only so many supporters of the code and they will be spread over all those games. Attendences then would be less.

            • February 11th 2018 @ 3:03pm
              Nemesis said | February 11th 2018 @ 3:03pm | ! Report

              8000 fans in ALeague will be a bigger crowd than the majority of attendances the players in Europe play in front of each week.

              Nick Ansell plays in the Portuguese top league. The same league where Ronaldo started his career.

              The club where Nick Ansell plays has a home crowd average this season of 2,230.

              Last season, the ALeague club where Nick Ansell was playing had average crowds of 22,000.

              Awer Mabil plays in the same league, his club’s average attendance is 2,716. When Mabil was playing ALeague, his club’s average attendance was over 12,000

              Goggol Mebrahtu is playing in the Czech Republic top league. His club’s average attendance is 3,018

        • February 9th 2018 @ 5:54pm
          stu said | February 9th 2018 @ 5:54pm | ! Report

          There is nothing in place to compare the standard of AFL players or League players for that matter to other leagues.
          Yes we will have players to fill the gaps in an expanded a-league, however the game does have a plethora of leagues where comparison can be made, and currently the A-league is found wanting in its current 10 team format.

          • February 9th 2018 @ 8:33pm
            Churchman72 said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:33pm | ! Report

            Expansion is needed for football reasons if nothing else with only nine unique opponents in a season players aren’t exposed to enough different teams to develop fully as footballers and can be found wanting outside of the league when they encounter a different type of opponent or a different style of play. Having only nine professional clubs in Australia creates problems of depth for the Socceroos also, as there may only be 3-4 Australia-eligible players in key positions in the league.

            The other factor is the number of games and length of season- to reach the highest level of football possible, we need a nine and a half month season, with a 10 week off season, allowing 30-50 games per club + internationals. The long off season and small number of games doesn’t allow the players to maintain elite fitness levels for the year, due to lack of match fitness.

            • February 9th 2018 @ 8:48pm
              kanga-Rodriguez said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:48pm | ! Report

              Tom

              U talk so much common sense, I agree with you

            • February 10th 2018 @ 7:28am
              BA Sports said | February 10th 2018 @ 7:28am | ! Report

              20 teams travelling all across the country, playing 9-10 months of the year with a mediocre FTA deal and a broader community who over 200 years have shown no cultural ability to stay invested in any single league or sport for that length of time. .. That seems viable for any sport with low attendance numbers and no war chest of money.

              If you want to set that as you goal for say 2050, no problem, but the goals need to be achievable.

              • February 10th 2018 @ 8:59am
                Kangajets said | February 10th 2018 @ 8:59am | ! Report

                One step at a time

                Expansion needs to happen soon

              • February 10th 2018 @ 5:51pm
                Churchman72 said | February 10th 2018 @ 5:51pm | ! Report

                First step is to get to 14 teams, stablise, then expand again, say to 16 teams, over the course of two-three broadcast contract cycles, then see if 18 or 20 teams is possible. It may take 20 years to get to this point. 16 clubs is FIFA’s preferred model as it gives 30 league games, is fully divisible for cup competition and leaves enough possible gaps for cup rounds and international windows.

                The travel issue is why clustering of teams is so important as it means that a greater portion of the additional away games are within a two hour bus journey from their base, keeing costs down. Look to the EPL and Bundesliga for examples. The EPL has clusters of teams around London, the midlands, Lancashire etc, and in the Bundesliga around the Rhine/Ruhr and Bavaria.

      • February 9th 2018 @ 11:20am
        lesterlike said | February 9th 2018 @ 11:20am | ! Report

        “We should try to make football authentic to this country, and not be insecure about having a real league if we don’t have the same types of things that exist in a European league.”

        What garbage. Football has it’s own culture, even in Australia, that is unique from other codes and has become a worldwide standard regardless of local culture. We should not have to compromise for inferior competition just to make it more appealing to the bogans who will never like our game anyway.

        • February 9th 2018 @ 2:20pm
          Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 2:20pm | ! Report

          Well said Lester

        • February 9th 2018 @ 2:26pm
          Jeff dustby said | February 9th 2018 @ 2:26pm | ! Report

          Yes, because you are so sophisticated. People who aren’t football supporters are b0gans? Gee that’s the statement of an elistist snob

          • February 9th 2018 @ 4:43pm
            Ferry McFerryFace Junior said | February 9th 2018 @ 4:43pm | ! Report

            Stop deflecting because you know full well what he meant by it, and he’s right – don’t let petty semantics get in the way of the truth.

            Gallop and Lowy have been hellbent on ‘de-ethnicising’ the game in this country by stealth under the guise of ‘broadbasing/Australianising’ it…just as David Hill attempted in the NSL days.

            If you don’t think the FFA’s endgame a couple of generations from now is for the Socceroos to be ethno-demographically identical to today’s Oz cricket team, and for the average A-League crowd to be likewise indistinguishable from their AFL counterparts…you’re being VERY naive.

            • February 9th 2018 @ 7:10pm
              Mark said | February 9th 2018 @ 7:10pm | ! Report

              The FFA has been quite open about de-ethnicising football in Australia. Football is much better for it.

              The ethnics ran football in this country for decades. How did that go? They disgraced themselves again and again, ran football into the ground, and gave football some reputations it is still recovering from.

              For all the ethnics who can’t get over the fact they don’t run football in Australia anymore, it is them that needs to ‘jog on’.

              • February 9th 2018 @ 7:22pm
                Will said | February 9th 2018 @ 7:22pm | ! Report

                The fact that you label the people from the past as ‘ethnics’ it smacks of pure ignorance and lack of respect.

              • February 9th 2018 @ 10:17pm
                Mark said | February 9th 2018 @ 10:17pm | ! Report

                Oh come on. People like the person I was responding to wear it like a badge of honour.

                People who think of the NSL as the ‘glory days’, who think that if only Australian football went back to what we were doing then, we’ll be fine, are the ones who are ignorant.

              • February 9th 2018 @ 8:26pm
                Rolly said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:26pm | ! Report

                The most ignorant comment I have ever read on any blogs ever .sad to see that there are people like you residing here .your understanding and knowledge of the round ball code and its history in this country boarders on stupidity .

            • February 9th 2018 @ 8:50pm
              kanga-Rodriguez said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:50pm | ! Report

              It’s not about the past . We acknowledge the massive contributions of the past nsl and previous to nsl clubs

              Time to move forward and be inclusive of everyone

            • February 11th 2018 @ 4:19pm
              Churchman72 said | February 11th 2018 @ 4:19pm | ! Report

              It’s not about that, so much as the demographic reality of Australia today. The average age of the first generation European migrants who founded and supported the “ethnic” clubs is between 65 and 75. They are literally dying out, as their grandkids aren’t so invested in the clubs as the previous generation.

              After the post WW2 recovery completed in Europe, emigration from the continent decreased rapidly as conditions improved at home. Then when the EU formed and the Schengen Agreement for movement within its borders, out migration from the EU almost ceased. We haven’t had strong European migration since the early 1990’s.

              Those NSL clubs that had depended on the stream of fresh arrivals from the old country, found their supply cut off, and started to decline first the Hungarian and Jewish backed teams, whose main immigration phase was in the 1940’s and 1950’s, then the Dutch and Italian backed clubs whose population base mainly arrived in the 1950’s and early 1960’s, then the Greek clubs whose main migration wave was on the 1960’s and finally thise clubs from the nations that made up the former Yugoslavia.

              These days there are more people in Australia born in Asia than Europe and of the non-British/Irish ancestry groups of European backgrounds, only the Italian and Greek communities of Sydney and Melbourne are large enough to back a fully professional football team at the A League stanards. Even then, the level of resources they would have wouldn’t be able to match the bigger A-League clubs and it wiuld beg the question ad to whether it would be worthwhile including them at the expense of a team from a place like Wollongong or Geelong that would be able to draw from a similar sized base without being tied to a particular ethnicity.

        • February 9th 2018 @ 3:26pm
          Blue said | February 9th 2018 @ 3:26pm | ! Report

          “worldwide standard regardless of local culture”?

          If you think football culture in Norway is the same as that in Uganda you’re either delusional or you’ve never left Sydney.

          It’s entirely reasonable to question the weird crusade for “aithentic” European-style active supporter culture. It reeks of play-acting and cultural cringe.

          • February 9th 2018 @ 4:45pm
            Ferry McFerryFace Junior said | February 9th 2018 @ 4:45pm | ! Report

            “If you think football culture in Norway is the same as that in Uganda you’re either delusional or you’ve never left Sydney”

            Both those countries have a salary cap-less open pyramid. Jog on…

            • February 10th 2018 @ 10:07am
              Hubris said | February 10th 2018 @ 10:07am | ! Report

              Your username is a weak copy of an English joke – is there a takeaway metaphor in that?

          • February 9th 2018 @ 8:51pm
            kanga-Rodriguez said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:51pm | ! Report

            Blue. Spruce

            U r looking for arguments nowadays

    • February 9th 2018 @ 7:52am
      Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 7:52am | ! Report

      Round 1 in 2019/20

      I’d like to see something like this

      Sydney FC v South Melbourne
      Newcastle v central coast
      Brisbane City / strikers v Brisbane Roar
      Canberra United v West Sydney
      Wollongong city v Perth Glory
      Tasmania v Adelaide United
      Melb Victory v Melbourne City

      Apologies to Wellington Phoenix

      • February 9th 2018 @ 8:28am
        j,binnie said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:28am | ! Report

        Kanga -With all that “tongue in cheek” promotion,why not Wellington v Auckland?
        That is the “trouble” with “derbies” they only come around twice a year and although that would help cash flow marginally (and mild interest) there is nothing in football history that has proved “expansion” per se, as successful.
        Whether we like to admit it or not “expansion” is all about money,and the availability of that commodity. Cheers jb.

        • February 9th 2018 @ 9:00am
          Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 9:00am | ! Report

          J b

          True . It is all about the money .

          We’ve all heard the rumours of money for southern Sydney and their pile of cash .

          I’ve read about Geelong Tasmania and Wollongong and Brisbane strikers or Brisbane City all having bids ready , so if those clubs are serious, …
          .so
          one would hope they are financially ready .

          I feel like there good accountable feedback from the Ffa on what the heck is going on with regards to the above clubs .

        • February 9th 2018 @ 4:12pm
          Churchman72 said | February 9th 2018 @ 4:12pm | ! Report

          That’s why we need clusters of at least four teams in and around the major population centres NSW (Newcastle-Sydney-Wollongong: 6 million people), Melbourne-Geelong (5 million) and SEQ (Sunshine Coast-Brisbane-Gold Coast: 3 million). These areas have over half the population of Australia and the highest levels of population growth. Only the NSW cluster has four teams (but can probably support 6-7), meaning getting extra teams into Metropolitan Victoria and SEQ should be the priority.

          • February 10th 2018 @ 12:15am
            j,binnie said | February 10th 2018 @ 12:15am | ! Report

            Tom – You are obviously a “new” HAL fan or are blessed with a short memory.. Not so long ago we had a Gold Coast team playing in the HAL and in a 13 home game season they “cracked ” 6000+ attendances 3 times, ,twice against Brisbane Roar who no doubt supplied most of the 6000 attendees,
            If these 3 figures are ignored for this exercise their average gate over the rest of season 11/12 was 2,530 per game.As you no doubt know the club “folded” out of the HAL soon after.
            Your statement poses the question,have things changed all that much in 6 seasons?.
            For comparisons sake, Wellington this season are playing to gates almost 3 times larger than GCU could attract; cheers jb.

            • February 10th 2018 @ 12:55am
              Churchman72 said | February 10th 2018 @ 12:55am | ! Report

              Hardly new at all, I was at the very first Roar game against NZ Knights, and saw my first NSL Brisbane Lions Game in the early 1980’s. I was a Roar member for over a decade, before leaving Brisbane. I am well aware of the train wreck that was Gold Coast United and went to every derby game between the two clubs.

              Gold Coast United was doomed to failure from the day Ben Buckley stiffed the Galaxy bid that had the backing of the local Football community in favour of Clive Palmer and his supposedly large bank balance. He only wanted a team because he was chasing a mining deal in China and the Chinese executives he wanted to entertain had no interest in rugby league and were unimpressed by the Titans.

              As soon as his China deal fell through because he opened his stupid mouth and insulted the people he was trying to do business with, he lost all interest in the GCU and went to war with the supporters (such as they had), the Qld State Government (his landlord at the stadium) and the FFA until he ran the club into the ground.

              The fact that the NPL team Gold Coast City drew bigger crowds at the same stadium than GCU for FFA cup games, the vibrant grassroots football scene and the rapid population growth (Gold Coast adds a similar number of people each year as Adelaide), means that there is a significant opportunity for an A League team there if it is done right. Gold Coast already has a bigger population than Wellington (the Gold Coast-Tweed Heads Significant Urban Area has over 650,000 people, anticipated to grow to one million in 20-25 years) also indicates a potential support base.

              The Sunshine Coast also is a fast growing city of a similar size to the Central Coast (300,000) and has no direct rivals from ither professional football codes. However I do believe that the first expansion club in Queensland should be a second Brisbane team.

              New Zealand based teams bring nothing to the A League except additional costs and the Trans-Tasman experiment should end. Better an Australian side that can bring another 18 or so Australian footballers into the league, eligible for the Socceroos.

              • February 10th 2018 @ 9:02am
                Kangajets said | February 10th 2018 @ 9:02am | ! Report

                Tom

                Good summary ??

              • February 10th 2018 @ 2:07pm
                j,binnie said | February 10th 2018 @ 2:07pm | ! Report

                Tom – we all know the reasons behind GCU’s fall from grace and it would be lovely to think that there are two teams in Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast just ready to fill the gaps everyone seems to recognise in the HAL.
                However there is a small matter of around $10 millions of available disposable income to be considered before that can take place.
                Now might I suggest that due to the present financial demands put on possible entrants to make ends meet, that $10 millions is just a little bit out of reach.
                As an old NSL Brisbane Lions supporter, I can tell you that the players wage bill for season 1982 came to $57,000, an amount that I doubt would meet the demands of a bench player in today’s Roar team.
                As you say there is apparently some good work being done towards a second Brisbane team ,
                It is just a pity that there appears to be two different identities involved, so an amount oF $20 millions is required.. Cheers jb

      • Columnist

        February 9th 2018 @ 5:22pm
        Stuart Thomas said | February 9th 2018 @ 5:22pm | ! Report

        Sydney 4 South Melbourne 1

        • February 9th 2018 @ 8:53pm
          kanga-Rodriguez said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:53pm | ! Report

          Stuart

          4-1

          So what

          That game it wasn’t a fair contest . Professional v players with jobs

          Even playing field would help

    • February 9th 2018 @ 8:06am
      Fadida said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:06am | ! Report

      An expansion article? It certainly is Groundhog Day

      • February 9th 2018 @ 8:17am
        chris said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:17am | ! Report

        haha! Nice one Fad

        • February 9th 2018 @ 8:19am
          Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:19am | ! Report

          ?

      • February 9th 2018 @ 1:11pm
        ac said | February 9th 2018 @ 1:11pm | ! Report

        Yes and whats more I am reading it. Now that’s sad. The A League seems to have gone back a little this year in attendances and TV ratings and I guess that’s a issue in itself. What to do. Expand ? Needs to be well thought out.

        • February 9th 2018 @ 4:03pm
          Churchman72 said | February 9th 2018 @ 4:03pm | ! Report

          The current competition format has become stale and repetitive, with each team playing each other three to five times a season. Thats why 14 teams is the minimum expansion target for football reasons.

          Plus the ongoing mismanagement of Brisbane Roar is dragging on attendances (down 5000 over the last 3-4 seasons) and is now dragging on performances too. The competition needs a strong, unified Roar as they can pull 45,000 plus in Home grand finals, so there is latent support that isn’t being tapped.

          • February 9th 2018 @ 8:54pm
            kanga-Rodriguez said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:54pm | ! Report

            Melbourne victory are a potential basket case as long as they keep muscat

          • February 10th 2018 @ 12:28am
            j,binnie said | February 10th 2018 @ 12:28am | ! Report

            Tom – From where are you sourcing your information.? You state Brisbane Roar have been losing fans for the last 3-4 seasons. This is simply not true.
            Last season , 16/17 they attracted an average crowd of 13,892 to their home games.
            In season 15/16 they attracted an average crowd of 12,850 to their home games .
            In season 14/15 they attracted an average crowd of 11,657 to their home games.
            In season 13/14 they attracted an average crowd of 14,959 to their home games.
            It should be added that in that last season, 13/14, Roar did win the Grand Final so were obviously playing very well.
            Now if we move to this season there is cause for concern for the average crowd after 11 home games has dropped to 9,137 per game. Cheers jb.

            • February 10th 2018 @ 1:00am
              Churchman72 said | February 10th 2018 @ 1:00am | ! Report

              There’s a little typo, a missing “from” in there, which is about the current season, as tour stats correctly point out. Admittedly, since I left Brisbane before the 14/15 season I have only been to a couple of games since, when I was in town. Prior to that I could probably count on my fingers the home games I missed since the first game against NZ Knights.

    • February 9th 2018 @ 8:19am
      Neil said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:19am | ! Report

      I would love to see a second Brisbane Team and would go to both clubs home games.

      • February 9th 2018 @ 8:48am
        Pauly said | February 9th 2018 @ 8:48am | ! Report

        A-League football in the River City every week? Why not?

        • February 9th 2018 @ 1:31pm
          Crack the code said | February 9th 2018 @ 1:31pm | ! Report

          I would love Brisbane City and the strikers , but they would obviously be competing for the same fan base .

          Would a team from the Sunshine Coast be a good third Queensland team .

        • February 10th 2018 @ 7:15pm
          LuckyEddie said | February 10th 2018 @ 7:15pm | ! Report

          Question is where do they play? If only at Cowcorp it will be a disaster but at a refurbished Ballymore it could be very successful.

    • Roar Guru

      February 9th 2018 @ 9:03am
      Grobbelaar said | February 9th 2018 @ 9:03am | ! Report

      South Melbourne Hellas just hosted a touring Chinese team in front of 2,000 fans.

      Allow them into the A-League and I warrant their average home attendance would be at least double that.

      • February 9th 2018 @ 9:20am
        Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 9:20am | ! Report

        The East Ballarat kangaroos beat the Peking ducks afl team in front of 36 people and 5 ducks

      • February 9th 2018 @ 10:49am
        James said | February 9th 2018 @ 10:49am | ! Report

        Isn’t this the team that smashed city 4-1.

        • February 9th 2018 @ 11:10am
          Kangajets said | February 9th 2018 @ 11:10am | ! Report

          James. Do u mean the Peking ducks?

          City played a youth team with Fornaroli against the Chinese team , not sure if it’s chinese New Year festival or for what reason the game was played

      • February 11th 2018 @ 8:02pm
        Nico said | February 11th 2018 @ 8:02pm | ! Report

        As a Brisbane fan I’m all for inclusion of South Melbourne to add something resembling a nod to the game’s history. The closest we get to that with the a league is Perth glory – founded in 1995. I could see Lakers being everyone’s second favourite team, much like the Rabbitohs in the NRL

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