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RF

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Joined September 2018

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The A League is at an interesting juncture to say the least. I would argue the recovery of the Wanderers is crucial to any hope of the recovery of the A League as a whole. Any league needs “big” clubs. The A League only has one – Melbourne Victory. No matter what SFC says, they aren’t a big club. They would have to be averaging around 20k or over. I think the limits on their support are now pretty clear.
Wanderers have the potential to reach Victory levels of support and lead a recovery of the whole League. At their best, their travelling support created colour and atmosphere wherever they went. The loss of that has been keenly felt – it’s not just their home games.
Sydney FC need a potent Wanderers more than any other club. Always a difficult entity to define, SFC are best defined by contrast with the Wanderers. Each needs the other, and football in Australia needs that rivalry.

Do the Western Sydney Wanderers still have fans?

Yep. In a way, Wanderers are the canary in the coal mine for the A League.

Do the Western Sydney Wanderers still have fans?

Punter, you do have to admit that it’s quite a ride.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

Correction, MF. They were FACTS not facts.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

My apologies if I misinterpreted your intent. I’ve seen the horrendous damage gambling does first hand (not me, I stress), and it’s something I (obviously) feel very strongly about.

That 24 billion figure sure emphasises the point that the average Joe cannot win.

I bet on the A-League. I’m an idiot

Oh look, it was a windup. I have lived in Sydney and thoroughly enjoyed doing so. I’m there on business fairly regularly still. It’s a great city. But there is no doubt that there is a striving, somewhat desperate form of materialism that holds sway in the culture.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

You jest, surely.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

Gambling is a blight on our country, causing untold misery, and the way it has been allowed to infiltrate sport is a disgrace.
Perhaps you should look at the stats before posting this piece of whimsical filler. Australians are the world’s biggest losing gamblers, losing 24 billion dollars every year. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/04/world/australia/australians-gambling-betting-machines.html
And that last sentence of yours is the reason why.

I bet on the A-League. I’m an idiot

A 25k stadium would have been perfect.
So very Sydney to go for the grand statement that all surface and no substance. Pretty much sums up the culture there.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

But it is too big, and always will be. There is no suggestion that SFC will ever average 20k crowds and that is still not even half the capacity of the new stadium.

What it means for the optics on tv is a stadium that always looks empty.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

the problem is, BT, that they’ve shot the A League in the foot too

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

To be realistic, the offer for the next deal will reflect ratings and streaming data, however they gather that (the system is notoriously opaque).

Assuming that is the case, then we can expect any offer to reduce in proportion to the percentage of the ratings fall since the last deal was signed. I think that is running at about 45% now but I’m not certain. Certainly the latest ratings are a fall well in excess of 50%.

Don’t underestimate the possibility of Fox deciding the League isn’t worth any investment if ratings stay at current levels.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

It’s an equation, LH. Does the projected income from the estimated subs generated by the A League coverage justify the cost of the coverage?
Now I haven’t worked for Fox, though I have had some dealings with the network, but the only way I can imagine that they can work out the level of subs tied to the A League is by inference from ratings – who is watching, because those are the people prepared to pay for the A League. It doesn’t take a genius to understand why ratings are obviously important to Fox. They would then add that to streaming data from Kayo. So if ratings are down 30%, then inevitably their subs income can be expected to fall by the same amount – or close to, allowing for some pickup by Kayo.
Fox would have signed the last deal on the basis of ratings indicating a certain level of income from subscriptions generated by the A League. That estimate has now proven to be grossly over the current reality. The network must be losing money hand over fist on the A League right now.
Fox have made it very clear that, on the figures as of a month or so ago, they would only – possibly – renew at a significantly reduced deal. They are not bluffing, and the figures have got worse. Clearly, Fox’s figures tell them that the income does currently not cover the expenditure. Note also how reluctant they were to release the extra 5 million for the new Melbourne team.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

It’s good exercise, after all

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

Yep, it’s hogwash alright. He lives in an alternative universe, that poster, as we all know.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

Fad, I’ve been in the screen business for a long time one way or another. Broadcasters pay for viewers. They are not interested in anything else. The League could be averaging 20k – if the viewing stats were the same as they are now, they would still not renew the broadcast deal. Those who suggest that Fox don’t care about ratings – well, that requires a disengagement with reality that I simply cannot understand.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

And none of that has affected the ratings at all, jb, and the broadcasters pay for the league.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

There really is only one question for me now – how David Gallop still has his job?

Surely there can be no other industry on earth that would keep on a CEO who has presided over a disaster of this magnitude.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

JB, you’ve been around long enough to know that this is much, much easier said that done. This is now a long term trend that has reached a critical point. It will take years of marketing and a significant improvement in squad strength and therefore on park football to undo the damage the last couple of seasons have done.

You also neglect the critical factor – the tv audience for the networks that pay the bills. Attendance, as the NRL shows, is a poor second, and here is where the damage is and it will take three good years – at least – to claw back lost ground.

Yes, this can be done, but not with FFA involved and not with the state feds extorting the revenues the competition raises.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

But did they? How solid were those bids? Sorry, Fad, I’m skeptical. I think there were a lot of expressions of interest, and not much actual ponying up.
Why do I believe that? Because FFA green lit Western United, a desperately flawed bid.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

This!

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

Representative enough for Fox, and that is the only answer that matters.
Can’t you see how futile it is to try and argue that somehow, alone of all the codes, football fans have switched en masse to Kayo?
Worse than futile – this so called argument deflects from the seriousness of the situation.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

My understanding – and this may not be correct – is not necessarily, because all parties have to agree on the terms of separation, and there appear to be deep divisions within the group.
So there is the potential for open ended delays, when immediate implementation is essential. We are, quite literally, talking about saving the A League.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

I have done and agree. They are lethal.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track

The ratings this weekend were end of competition level. 10k for the WSW game, and 25 for SFC/MV. 8000 average at the gate. And the SCG pitch. I honestly believe that this is the lowest point in the A League’s short history.
Forget Kayo. Hanging onto Kayo as a reason for ratings flies in the face of any logic, because we have the figures from AFL and NRL. Yes, there will have been some bleed to the streaming services – I’m one of them. But denying reality serves no useful purpose. In any case, Fox have already made very clear their position.
Surely the state feds can see above self interest and understand that unless they cut the A League free with the income the clubs need, the professional competition will cease to exist at the end of this tv deal. Imagine this trend continuing into next season.
We must have an independent A League from 30 June.

Some smarter decisions can help get the A-League back on track