Fox Sports football commentator Simon Hill has urged both Australian State and Federal governments to start investing in football, otherwise we will continue to get left behind.
The Socceroos failed to win a match at the 2018 World Cup and weren’t able to score from open play during their three matches against France, Denmark and Peru.
On top of the disappointing campaign of the national team, the A-League continues to stagnate with the league desperately crying out for expansion and the overall standard of the league dropping at a worrying rate.
Hill says the FFA need to start converting football lovers into fans of the local game if the A-League wants to prosper and that can only occur by majorly investing in the sport.
“We need to invest in this game, we’ve got to get serious about this sport,” he told SEN Mornings.
“Because we’re competing against 200 other nations, most of whom have this as their national game.
“My plea to co-operate Australia and to the government of Australia, both State and Federal, is we have to invest in this sport.
“And then we can have some of these moments that other nations are having and produce some of the players like Cristiano Ronaldo and have national heroes on a global stage, rather than focusing on more parochial sports.
“We need to start having a very serious discussion about how we take this game forward in Australia
“We’ve come along way in 15 years since the instigation of the new FFA board, but we still have just as much work to go on our journey.
“That’s a positive that we still have some much growth in our game, but we’ve got to start making those inroads.
“We’ve got to start trying to attract people, not only just to play the sport, but we’ve got to start getting those people to come and watch the A-League and to get invested in the game here in Australia.
“Because that’s where our growth is. At the moment people love football but they’re still too focused on the European game and the World Cup; Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Neymar.
“We’ve got to get them invested in our local stars and that requires investment, not a silver bullet over five months, we’ve got to do it over five, 10, 15, 20 years.
“We need a plan and that needs to happen sooner rather than later because we’re standing still at the moment and when you stand still in world football, you go backwards.”
Listen to Simon Hill's chat on SEN Mornings with Brett Phillips in the player below