Football Federation Australia

Football Federation Australia (FFA) is the governing body of soccer, futsal, and beach soccer within Australia.[1] The FFA is headquartered in Sydney. Although the first governing body of the sport was founded in 1911, FFA in its current form was only established in 1963 as the Australian Soccer Federation. It was later reconstituted in 2003 as the Australian Soccer Association before adopting its current name in 2005.

FFA oversees the men's, women's, youth, Paralympic, beach and futsal national teams in Australia, the national coaching programs and the state governing bodies for the sport. It sanctions professional, semi-professional and amateur soccer in Australia. FFA made the decision to leave the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC), for which it was a founding member, and become a member of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) on 1 January 2006 and ASEAN Football Federation (AFF).

Football Federation Australia
Football Federation Logo, 2018
  • 1961
  • 2004 [1] (current format)
FIFA affiliation1963
AFC affiliation2006
AFF affiliation2013
ChairmanChris Nikou


FFA's origins lie as far back as 1911, with the formation of the "Commonwealth Football Association".[2] This body was then superseded by the Australian Soccer Football Association, which was formed in 1921, with its headquarters in Sydney.[3] The Australian Soccer Football Association operated for forty years, was given FIFA provisional membership in November 1954[4] and this was confirmed in June 1956,[5] however in 1960, the association disbanded after being suspended from FIFA for the poaching of players from overseas.[3] In 1961 the Australian Soccer Federation was formed as a potential successor to the former governing body for the sport. However, this association was refused re-admittance to FIFA until outstanding fines had been paid, which was later done in 1963, seeing the new national body admitted to FIFA.[3]

Isolated from international football, Australia repeatedly applied to join the Asian Football Confederation in 1960,[6] and in 1974[7] but were denied in all requests. Australia with New Zealand eventually formed the Oceania Football Federation (now Oceania Football Confederation) in 1966.[8] Australia resigned as an OFC member in 1972 to pursue membership with the AFC, but they rejoined in 1978.[9][10]

In 1995, the Australian Soccer Federation formally changed its name to Soccer Australia.[3]

In 2003, following Australia's failure to qualify for the 2002 FIFA World Cup, allegations of fraud and mismanagement were levelled at Soccer Australia by elements within the Australian Press including the ABC.[11] Soccer Australia commissioned an independent inquiry known as the Crawford Report as a result of the Australian Government's threat to withdraw funding to the sport. The Australian Government could not interfere as any political interference would have constituted a breach of FIFA Statutes. The findings of the report were critically analysed by the board of Soccer Australia who believed that the recommendations contained therein were not capable of being implemented. The report recommended, among other things, the reconstitution of the governing body with an interim board headed by prominent businessman Frank Lowy. Some three months after Lowy's appointment Soccer Australia was placed into liquidation and Australia Soccer Association (ASA) was created without encompassing the Crawford Report recommendations and effectively disenfranchising all parties who had an interest in Soccer Australia. The Australian Government provided approximately $15 million to the ASA.[12]

On 1 January 2005 ASA renamed itself to Football Federation Australia (FFA), aligning with the general international usage of the word "football", in preference to "soccer", and to also distance itself from the failings of the old Soccer Australia. It coined the phrase "old soccer, new football" to emphasise this.[3]

On 1 January 2006, Football Federation Australia moved from the OFC to the AFC.[3] The move was unanimously endorsed by the AFC Executive Committee on 23 March 2005, and assented by the OFC on 17 April. The FIFA Executive Committee approved the move on 29 June, noting that "as all of the parties involved ... had agreed to the move, the case did not need to be discussed by the FIFA Congress", and was unanimously ratified by the AFC on 10 September.[13][14][15] FFA hoped that the move would give Australia a fairer chance of qualifying for the FIFA World Cup and allow A-League clubs to compete in the AFC Champions League, thereby improving the standard of Australian football at both international and club levels with improved competition in the region.[16]

In February 2008, FFA formally announced their intention to bid for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, 2022 FIFA World Cup and the 2015 AFC Asian Cup.[17][18] In 2010, the decision was made by FFA to withdraw its World Cup bid for 2018, instead focusing on a bid for the 2022 tournament.[19] FFA failed in its $45.6 million bid for the 2022 World Cup having received only one vote from the FIFA Executive.[20]

In 2013, Australia was admitted as a full member to the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF), after they formally joined as an invite affiliation to the regional body in 2006.[21]

On 29 January 2015, after the defeat of Iraq and the United Arab Emirates during the 2015 AFC Asian Cup, West Asian Football Federation members reportedly sought to remove Australia from the AFC primarily due to "Australia benefiting hugely from Asian involvement without giving much in return".[22]

In November 2018 with numerous board positions coming to the end of their 3 year term, the bulk of the board of directors were replaced at an annual general meeting, as well as the departure of Steven Lowy as chair of the board, which he did in protest at major changes to the governance and voting structure in the over-arching FFA Congress that elects the FFA Board. His position was filled by Chris Nikou.[23] Other board members to be elected were Heather Reid, Joseph Carrozzi and Remo Nogarotto.[24]


FFA state member federations
A diagram showing the nine member federations of FFA.

Football in Australian has used a federated model of national, states and territories governing bodies since the first state body was established in New South Wales in 1882. Local associations and regional zones were set up within the states and territories as football expanded and from time to time informal groups of clubs have augmented the formal structures. Today, there is one national governing body, nine state and territory member federations and over 100 district, regional and local zones and associations.

Corporate structure

Board of directors

Name Position
Chris Nikou Chairman
Heather Reid Vice Chairman
Kelly Rosmarin Director
Joseph Carrozzi Director
Crispin Murray Director
Remo Nogarotto Director

Ref.: [25]

Senior management

Name Position
David Gallop Chief Executive Officer
Mark Falvo Treasurer
Luke Bould Chief Commercial Officer
Luke Casserly Head of National Performance
Graham Arnold Team Coach (Men's)
Ante Milicic Team Coach (Women's)
Adam Mark Media/Communications Manager
Ben Wilson Referee Coordinator
Greg O'Rourke Head of Hyundai A-League and Westfield W-League
Emma Highwood Head of Community, Women's Football and Football Development
Tim Holden Head of Legal & Business Affairs
Jo Setright Company Secretary and Special Counsel

Ref.: [25][26]


FFA organises several national competitions, with state-based competitions organised by the respective state governing football federations.

See also


  1. ^ a b "Who We Are". Football Federation Australia.
  2. ^ "Football – Commonwealth Association". The Brisbane Courier. 16 April 1914. Retrieved 18 October 2013.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Timeline of Australian Football". Archived from the original on 17 December 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2013.
  4. ^ Roy Hay, Bill Murray (2014). A History of Football in Australia: A Game of Two Halves. Hardie Grant Books. p. 291.
  5. ^ "Come back in 2 years, says FIFA". The Straits Times. Reuters, United Press International. 11 June 1956.
  6. ^ "AFC turns down an application by Australia". The Straits Times. 8 August 1960.
  7. ^ "AFC turn down Aussie application". The Straits Times. 15 September 1974.
  8. ^ "History". Retrieved 18 October 2013.
  9. ^ OFC History Archive index at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "Oceania admit Taiwan and Aussies quit". The Straits Times. Reuters, United Press International. 1 March 1976.
  11. ^ "The World Today - Soccer Australia reforms".
  12. ^ Presenter: Mark Colvin, Reporter: Ross Solly (26 September 2003). "Soccer Australia officially canned". PM. ABC Local Radio. Transcript.
  13. ^ "Other executive decisions". FIFA. 29 June 2005. Retrieved 25 November 2013.
  14. ^ "FIFA approves Australia move" (PDF). FIFA. Archived from the original on 19 October 2013. Retrieved 19 October 2013.CS1 maint: Unfit url (link)
  15. ^ "Put Asian football first: Bin Hammam". AFC Asian Football Confederation. 11 September 2005.
  16. ^ "Australia gets President's blessing to join AFC in 2006". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 18 October 2013.
  17. ^ Smithies, Tom (23 February 2008). "Lowy's vision for soccer". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 5 February 2009. Retrieved 25 February 2008.
  18. ^ "Let's land the World Cup". The Age. Melbourne. 24 February 2008. Retrieved 25 February 2008.
  19. ^ "Australia to focus on 2022 Bid". FIFA. 12 June 2010. Retrieved 23 June 2010.
  20. ^ "FFA receive A$45m for World Cup bid". Sport Business. Retrieved 20 November 2009.
  21. ^ "Australia joins ASEAN family". Retrieved 8 November 2013.
  22. ^ Hassett, Sebastian (29 January 2015). "Angry Gulf nations leading charge to kick Australia out of Asian Football Confederation". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 1 May 2018.
  23. ^ "A-League expansion first order of business for new FFA chair Nikou". SBS News. 19 November 2018.
  24. ^ "Reid, Carrozzi, Nikou, Nogarotto elected to FFA board". SBS News. 19 November 2018.
  25. ^ a b "Who We Are". Football Federation Australia. November 2018. Retrieved 1 December 2018.
  26. ^

External links


The A-League is a professional men's soccer league run by Football Federation Australia (FFA). At the top of the Australian league system, it is the country's primary competition for the sport. The A-League was established in 2004 as a successor to the National Soccer League (NSL) and competition commenced in August 2005. The league is currently contested by eleven teams; ten based in Australia and one based in New Zealand. It is known as the Hyundai A-League through a sponsorship arrangement with the Hyundai Motor Company.

Seasons run from October to May and include a 27-round regular season followed by a Finals Series playoff involving the highest-placed teams, culminating in a grand final match. The winner of the regular season tournament is dubbed the 'premier' while the winner of the grand final is the season's 'champion'. This differs from the other major football codes in Australia, where 'premier' refers to the winner of the grand final and the winner of the regular season is the 'minor premier'.

Successful A-League clubs gain qualification into the continental competition, the Asian Football Confederation Champions League (ACL) also known as "AFC Champions League". Similar to the United States and Canada's Major League Soccer, as well as other professional sports leagues in Australia, Australia's A-League does not practice promotion and relegation.

Since the league's inaugural season, a total of seven clubs have been crowned A-League Premiers and six clubs have been crowned A-League Champions. The current premier is Perth Glory, who finished first in the 2018–19 A-League. The current champions are Sydney FC, who won the 2019 A-League Grand Final, equalling the record of four domestic titles held by Melbourne Victory, Marconi Stallions, South Melbourne, and Sydney City. The A-League does not recognise the history of its predecessor, the National Soccer League (NSL) which was the nations premier football competition from 1977 to 2004.

Alex Gibb

Alex Gibb was an Australian football (soccer) player. Gibb is recognised as Australia's first international captain and was awarded retrospectively by Football Federation Australia cap number 1.

Alison Forman

Alison Leigh Forman (born 17 March 1969 in Maitland, New South Wales) is a retired Australian international soccer player. Among her accomplishments, Forman played for the Australia women's national soccer team at the 1995 and 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup finals and at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Australia.

Australia Paralympic soccer team

The Australia Paralympic soccer team represents Australia in international 7-a-side competition for athletes with cerebral palsy, acquired brain injury or symptoms acquired from stroke and at the Paralympic Games. The team was founded in 1998, by the Australian Paralympic Committee (APC) and the Cerebral Palsy International Sports and Recreation Association (CPISRA) and is controlled in partnership by the governing body for soccer in Australia, Football Federation Australia (FFA). The team's official nickname is the Pararoos.

Australia national beach soccer team

The Australia national beach soccer team represents Australia in international men's beach soccer. The team is controlled by the governing body for association football in Australia, Football Federation Australia (FFA), which is currently a member of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and the regional ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) since leaving the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) in 2006. The team's official nickname is the Beach Socceroos.

The team has represented Australia at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup tournaments on one occasion, in 2005.

Australia national soccer team

The Australia national soccer team represents Australia in international men's soccer. Officially nicknamed the Socceroos, the team is controlled by the governing body for soccer in Australia, Football Federation Australia (FFA), which is currently a member of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and the regional ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) since leaving the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) in 2006.

Australia is the only national team to have been a champion of two confederations, having won the OFC Nations Cup four times between 1980 and 2004, as well as the AFC Asian Cup at the 2015 event on home soil. The team has represented Australia at the FIFA World Cup tournament on five occasions, in 1974 and from 2006 to 2018. The team has also represented Australia at the FIFA Confederations Cup four times.

Australia women's national futsal team

The Australia women's national futsal team represents Australia in women's international futsal. The team is controlled by the governing body for association football in Australia, Football Federation Australia (FFA), which is currently a member of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and the regional ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) since leaving the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) in 2006.

Colin Bennett (soccer)

Col Bennett (born 12 September 1950) is a retired Australian soccer player. He is member of the Football Federation Australia - Football Hall of Fame.

Eddie Lennie

Edward M. Lennie OAM (born 5 October 1959 in Glasgow, Scotland) is a retired Australian football (soccer) referee. He is best known for officiating at the 1998 FIFA World Cup and the 1996 Olympic Games.


The Football Federation Australia Cup, commonly known as the FFA Cup, is the main national soccer knockout cup competition in Australia. The annual competition is organised by and named after Football Federation Australia. It features all the teams from the top division, the A-League, as well as from lower tiers in the Australian leagues, including the National Premier Leagues. Teams enter the competition in progressional stages, with qualifying rounds used to determine which lower division teams eventually join those from the A-League in later stages of the cup. From its inception to 2017 it was sponsored by the Westfield Group and known as the Westfield FFA Cup.Adelaide United has two titles while Melbourne Victory, Melbourne City and Sydney FC have won one title each. The current champions are Adelaide United after defeating Sydney FC in the 2018 Final.

FFA State Institute Challenge

The FFA State Institute Challenge is a youth soccer tournament organised by Football Federation Australia. The tournament is held in December (was also held in July 2009 and January 2010) on a yearly basis at the Australian Institute of Sport headquarters in Canberra, Australia. The tournament was first held in 2009.

Football Federation Australia Hall of Fame

The FFA Football Federation Australia Hall of Fame aims to celebrate and highlight the achievements of retired players that have contributed significantly to the game and are made up of either or both Australian and/or non-Australian players, managers and other participants who have become significant figures in the history of the game in Australian. New members are added each year, with inductions announced towards the end of the year.

The Hall was first established as the Soccer Hall of Fame in 1999.

George Keith (footballer)

George Keith (born 26 May 1944) is a Scottish-born former footballer who represented Australia in the late 1960s. Keith is a member of the Football Federation Australia - Football Hall of Fame.

Lisa Casagrande

Lisa Maree Casagrande (born 29 May 1978, Lismore, New South Wales) is an Australian retired footballer. She played at the FIFA Women's World Cup in 1995 (scoring a goal) and 1999, and at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney.

Mike Cockerill

Michael Cockerill (20 November 1960 – 31 August 2017) was an investigative Australian football (soccer) journalist who wrote for Fairfax newspapers, Fox Sports and formerly C7 Sport. He was also a football pundit and match commentator and appeared regularly on the football show Fox Sports FC.

In 2011, he was inducted into the Football Federation Australia Hall of Fame.It was announced that he had died from illness, just before the Japan–Australia World Cup qualifier on 31 August 2017.He has been honoured by the Football Federation Australia through the award of the Michael Cockerill Medal, recognizing the standout National Premier Leagues performer in each season's FFA Cup competition.

Mike Petersen

Michael Petersen (born 6 May 1965) is an Australian former soccer player. He is an inductee of the Football Federation Australia - Football Hall of Fame.

Milan Ivanović

Milan Ivanović (Serbian Cyrillic: Милан Ивановић, pronounced [mǐlan iʋǎːnoʋit͡ɕ]; born 21 December 1960 in Sivac, SR Serbia, SFR Yugoslavia) is a former Serbian Australian football (soccer) player. He also played for Australian national team.

National Premier Leagues

The National Premier Leagues (NPL) is a national association football competition in Australia which acts as the second tier of the sport in the country below the A-League. The NPL consists of the highest level state league in each state-based federation within Australia. In total the NPL is contested by clubs from eight divisions; these are ACT, NSW, Northern NSW, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia. The NPL is overseen by Football Federation Australia (FFA), in partnership with participating state-based member federations. Since 2014 it has been sponsored by PlayStation 4 and thus officially known as the PS4 National Premier Leagues.


The Y-League, formerly known as the National Youth League is an Australian national soccer youth developmental and reserve league, run by Football Federation Australia. The National Youth League was established as a successor to the competition of the same name and commenced in August 2008. The league runs in conjunction with the A-League as a developmental/reserve league. It is contested by ten teams, nine of which compete in the A-League, the other, the Australian Institute of Sport. Seasons currently run from October to March.

The league is sponsored by Foxtel and thus officially known as the Foxtel Y-League.

National teams
Current competitions
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National football associations of Asia (AFC)
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