Football Federation Australia has released a discussion paper centred around the establishment of a National Second Division by 2021.
The white paper, composed by the National Second Division Working Group, states key requirements that would enable the launch of a second-tier competition.
FFA chairman Chris Nikou says a National Second Division is crucial in providing an adequate pathway for footballers across Australia.
“The development of a blueprint for a National Second Division which all stakeholders are aligned with is critical to better connect the various levels and pathways throughout the Australian football ecosystem,” Nikou said in a statement.
“There is general consensus between the stakeholders involved in this process, the Association of Australian Football Clubs, Professional Footballers Australia, Member Federations and FFA that a sustainable National Second Division would be a significant step forward for football.
“It is not intended to be definitive on the structure and operational aspects of any National Second Division, but rather to reflect the discussions that have taken place and consolidate a vast body of work that has already been done.”
Key recommendations included in the white paper are:
Commencement of a National Second Division in 2021/22 that will be financially sustainable and provide professional pathways for more Australian players.
Identify a roadmap for the delivery of the National Second Division, starting with financial sustainability, including the securing of commercial and broadcast arrangements as well as start-up capital.
Establish a steering committee comprising the FFA Chair, two Member Federations, two representatives of the AAFC, one from the PFA and a representative from one Hyundai A-League Club to act on the recommendations and considerations in the white paper.