Australia's soccer federation has laid off 70 percent of its staff as it battles to remain solvent during a national shutdown to contain the coronavirus.
"This has been an extremely difficult decision to make, but necessary to stabilise the organisation so that it can continue to service the game, albeit in a vastly different landscape," Football Federation Australia chief executive James Johnson said in a statement on Friday.
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FFA hope Tokyo's rescheduled 2021 Olympics features a revised under-24 men's soccer tournament to ensure a swathe of Olyroos that qualified the side all get a chance to compete.
Graham Arnold's team ended a 12-year Olympic absence by qualifying earlier this year for the tournament that is, aside from three over-age exemptions, usually an under-23 event.
When Football Federation Australia CEO James Johnson said on Tuesday that "mission difficult, had become mission impossible," he was talking about the desire to complete the 2019-20 A-League season. But he could have just as easily have been summarising the game's attempts to stay afloat in its current model.
If reports circulating on Wednesday are to be believed, the suspension of the current A-League season has presented the opportunity for Fox Sports, the local broadcaster, to tear up their $57m-a-year...
The rest of the A-League season will be condensed with games played on three-day turnarounds, while all soccer competitions in Australia can continue despite the coronavirus pandemic.
Football Federation Australia says the remainder of the A-League season and this weekend's W-League Grand Final between Melbourne City and Sydney FC will proceed as scheduled but played in empty stadiums.
The governing body says all lower-level soccer leagues in Australia, including under-age competitions, can continue...