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A Winters Tale

midfielder

Well-Known Member
On inside sport today an article was run and was heavily copied from Fairfax about Football move to winter and how that will be achieved.

I will copy the article in the next post.

Then I will put my two cents worth in.

Biggest decision in many years ... i.e. moving the competition to winter....

Love the thoughts of the forum.

Shaun, if you read this thread love your comments as well.
 

midfielder

Well-Known Member
Post two the article from inside sport.

A revamped FFA Cup could help keep players ticking over during an eight-month break between A-League seasons, as football transitions to winter and provides a test run for a direct-to-consumer streaming model being planned by the sport.While the next A-League season has been locked in to start on December 27 and will finish with a grand final in June 2021
there are still huge question marks over what domestic football looks like after that point and how the planned shift from a summer to winter calendar is managed.


The Herald can reveal the most likely scenario being discussed by A-League powerbrokers, who are mapping out possibilities for what could happen at the end of 2021 and beyond.Senior club sources say the A-League is facing an eight-month hiatus after next year's grand final with the following season unlikely to begin until February 2022.The extended recess is a one-off consequence of moving to a winter season but the void would be filled with other competitions to ensure A-League players remain active during most of that time, according to the plan favoured most by club executives.

Teams would be given a two-month break in July and August 2021 before returning for pre-season training, with competitive matches to resume in September with the FFA Cup's round of 32, which would wrap up in December.

A change to the format of the FFA Cup is almost certain. FFA chief executive James Johnson has previously expressed a desire to move to a group stage in the round of 32 to provide more national-level matches for players, while FFA's XI Principles document also forecasts a move to groups and for the final to become the last match of the domestic football season each year.While some within the game believe a group stage would take away some of the romance of the FFA Cup by making it more difficult for NPL sides to progress, it is seen as a handy short-term solution to keep A-League teams active - particularly in a year where the Socceroos could be faced with a backlog of qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and players will need to be fit if called upon.An open draw – instead of the current structure which guarantees a semi-final berth for at least one non-A-League team – is also on the cards, as well as regionalising the early stages of the cup to ensure more derbies and minimise travel costs.

Then in January 2022, A-League teams would be involved in a pre-season tournament or "league cup", before the season proper begins in February and ends just before the World Cup commences in November 2022.The A-League has not had an official pre-season competition since the Pre-Season Challenge Cup was discarded in 2009, while this year's FFA Cup was abandoned due to the COVID-19 pandemic.The FFA Cup was specifically excluded from the A-League's revised broadcast rights deal with Fox Sports – which expires at the end of July – because it was viewed as an ideal test run for a football-specific streaming platform being planned by A-League clubs.

Firmer details around the service are scarce, but sources believe it will serve a pivotal role in connecting the A-League with the grassroots by providing an all-encompassing digital platform for the whole of the game.
The Herald reported in May that FFA and A-League clubs were interested in taking on responsibility for broadcast production of matches, enabling them to exercise more control over how rights are sold and opening up the possibility of deals with companies like Optus Sport.

A move to winter is not officially set in stone for the A-League, with extensive research being undertaken on the commercial impact before any definitive call is made.
But while some clubs - particularly in AFL-dominated Victoria - have reservations, most key stakeholders within the sport believe there is more to be gained than lost by flipping the calendar and running the A-League in tandem with grassroots competitions, which have always been played in winter.

Analysis of data shows that the tempo of A-League matches improves during the cooler months, but that the competition suffers a decline in share of mainstream media space when going up against the other major codes, especially the AFL and NRL.

 

midfielder

Well-Known Member
My reply ...

My reading of the Tea Leaf’s and Taro cards, is some don’t laugh, but some significance research has been under gone and the move to winter is the result.

Despite what AFL trolls say the move to summer [way back in the NSL] was not to get away from AFL, it was because games were played in the afternoon and it was assumed that all age players could not get to matches as they were playing… thus move to summer…

Today we play at night so attendance because of all age players playing while some effect, no longer the same issue.

Why winter is the bigger question?????

Again, its my reasoning not inside information… FFA want a second division and noises have been made about expanding the league… with possible and I repeat possible P & R in a mid-term future…

I think the clubs see ratings as their future, and I think they see improved ratings if they play when people are playing.

If you look to the past this make no sense at all given our best ratings have been in that small window between end of AFL / NRL and before cricket…. However, cricket is starting earlier, and the NRL in particular are expanding into end of season extensions especially with Pacific Nations & NZ Vrs Australia test matches and maybe a SOS as well…

Again, don’t laugh, but if we look at the owners of the A-League as a collective there are some smart business folk there….. they can see and hear the same issues we can…. That they say little and to date do little does not mean they don’t understand.

The Tea Leaf’s tell me the move to winter is a strategic one, its such a mega move when recent logic says stay in summer…. There must be closely held to the chest research / analysis / accompanied by or supported by modelling.

Dollars are tight, our biggest asset is our playing base…

The various articles and timing over the next two years as detailed in Waz’s first post is simply exploring the best methods to get to operating in winter…

I could be wrong, but this is a mega to the multi mega power move and given those involved and their back grounds I can only assume the research has been done, the plans especially for marketing are being developed but won’t be reviled until the last as they don’t want the AFL & NRL understanding what they plan.
 

Ads

Well-Known Member
From an average Joe point of view, someone who has kids, wife and 9-5 job with football already taking up a large portion of Sunday,
I can foresee a large portion of casual, semi enthusiastic and die hard fans including myself not being able to make games or watch live / catch up.

It’s not that I wouldn’t make the time when I can but in day to day life, events, kids, life gets in the way and if I was not able to watch it live alot of people struggle to rewatch if haven’t seen it live.

I think I mentioned previously that I really love being able to walk from the car down to the stadium in thongs and shorts and enjoy those evening feels with the breeze and the palm trees and it just wouldn’t be the same if had to try and turn up freezing our tits off every single game.
Maybe ok for the boys club younger crew who stay warm with yelling and jumping up and down but for the majority Central Coast fans I think it would make our current crowd and viewership predicament even worse.

I haven’t analysed other options and pros/cons other than winter vs summer but is there any other alternative or compromise?
 

pjennings

Well-Known Member
From an average Joe point of view, someone who has kids, wife and 9-5 job with football already taking up a large portion of Sunday,
I can foresee a large portion of casual, semi enthusiastic and die hard fans including myself not being able to make games or watch live / catch up.

It’s not that I wouldn’t make the time when I can but in day to day life, events, kids, life gets in the way and if I was not able to watch it live alot of people struggle to rewatch if haven’t seen it live.

I think I mentioned previously that I really love being able to walk from the car down to the stadium in thongs and shorts and enjoy those evening feels with the breeze and the palm trees and it just wouldn’t be the same if had to try and turn up freezing our tits off every single game.
Maybe ok for the boys club younger crew who stay warm with yelling and jumping up and down but for the majority Central Coast fans I think it would make our current crowd and viewership predicament even worse.

I haven’t analysed other options and pros/cons other than winter vs summer but is there any other alternative or compromise?

TBH I love the breeze and palm trees as well. However the points I would make with a move to winter

Pro
1) Better connection with juniors. The squad turning up to junior training in July and August when the A League doesn't start until October makes it a hard sell to connect to young families. The old August starts had a better connection.
2) Faster tempo.
3) Academy players would be playing at the same time so young players could come up and injured players could come back through the NPL
4) No clash with 'going to the beach'

1) Potential clash if you are playing if the game is the afternoon
2) Can get awfully cold if playing at night.
 

turbo

Well-Known Member
4) No clash with 'going to the beach'
I’ve seen a few people say this in various places. Of all the benefits I think that is the most dubious. If you aren’t prioritising the game over going to the beach then you had no intention of watching anyway. It would be socialising, jobs around the house, watching the block or any other excuse.

From a spectator POV I love going down to the stadium on a warm night but I do appreciate the league has been faster on the field when forced to winter by COVID. There’s some real risks to moving to winter and I hope extensive research has been done.
 

Tevor

Well-Known Member
I guess it gives the club an opportunity for extra merch and they can start selling jackets and scarfs will be more prominent. I’m willing to give winter a go but I also really like the summer season and will miss many aspects of it. Hopefully winter makes new experiences to replace them. Like others I hope the league get this gamble right. Mostly an eastern state issue however sharing grounds will be an issue and football will always be the poor cousin and get shafted. What’s the use of a faster game on a cow paddock that has been ripped up by the knuckle draggers the day before.
 

Shaun Mielekamp

Well-Known Member
Hey guys, apologies for the delay is reply here I couldn't find the thread as i was looking in the wrong spot. There are two very strong and significant points of view here. Is it better to have improved football conditions and timing with grassroots for the professional game? or is it better to have clear airspace and more media attention in summer resulting in increased revenues and increased broadcast interests?

My personal opinion is I want to see both - this year we will see an Autumn comp start in Summer and end in Winter. I'd be interested in what a Spring comp looks like starting in winter and ending in Summer.

At the end of the day I believe the answer to this will entirely come down to the new broadcast deal for the 2021/22 season and beyond. If a subscription OTT model generates the most by getting grassroots to pay $10 per month to watch the A-league and NPL then easy decision. Also if a broadcaster offer $50m+ for summer competition again easy decision.

The only shame it is does feel a bit like the tale wagging the dog rather than the other way around - I just feel this is reality. Happy to be proven wrong.
 

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