News that Nathan Tinkler has handed back the A licence for the Newcastle Jets after just two years of a ten year deal will have sent shock waves through the Football community, however many closer to the game are not surprised. The question is will other Franchise owners follow suit?
Perth Glory is still part of the A League Finals series, and a very lucrative Asian Champions League place is at stake for owner Tony Sage. If this can be achieved he will undoubtedly remain at the club as it will assist his business interests away from football. If they fail some people close to the club have hinted he too may walk away.
Comments have been made in the past that the A league Franchises cannot be run like shops in a Westfield shopping centre; The business on which FFA Chairman Frank Lowy has made his millions.
The quote from the Hunter Sports Group CEO Troy Palmer would tend to back up such allegations. “A difficult decision but one forced upon the HSG through an irrevocable breakdown in confidence of the current FFA management and its refusal to provide clear and transparent answers about the Jets acquisition fee and a variety of other issues”.
The fans need to find a voice and send a very clear message to the FFA that they no longer have faith in the bungling bureaucracy running the game. If strong direction is not shown the game is heading for a disastrous crash, from which it will recover, but may never climb to the heights the A League initially promised.
One has to wonder what major sponsor Hyundai must make of all these clubs falling over and its investment in the league. At least its cars last longer than an A league club!
We have questioned in the past whether CEO Ben Buckley is the man to lead Football, and each week he remains at the helm the argument that he is not grows stronger.
He clearly lacks the communication skills with the media and also with the A league club owners, and one would have to say that the followers of the game are fast losing faith in him as a figurehead.
Most people are fully aware that the FFA will not relinquish control of the Hyundai A league due to its importance as a financial bargaining tool when it comes to television rights and sponsorship. Yet one feels the grip they have on it is too tight and is in fact strangling the life out of it.
The announcement that they will run the team out of a Western Sydney is inappropriate and do they really have the wherewithal to lay the foundations for a long-term successful club in six months?
Football is a business, but this business is being run badly. It is time that people who had an understanding of the game and its history as well as the ability to communicate with people on all levels were given the reins.
Brace yourselves Football fans there may well be more bad news just around the corner, as there are plenty who feel the same as the Newcastle Jets Management
As Troy Palmer stated “Unfortunately, having lost confidence in the FFA management and its ability to find a resolution, it is clear we have no other option. It is about removing ourselves from an administration in which we have an untenable relationship.”