Sunday, 23 February 2014

The Great Football Swindle

Despite the shambolic implementation of the NPL in Victoria, it must be happy days at the FFV offices in St Kilda Road after they have pulled off a million dollar swindle as they try and claw back the heavy financial losses of recent years.

The restructure of the senior men's competitions will allow them to take an extra million dollars in team entry fees from clubs this season. 

The cash influx starts at the top, with the expanded elite tier of the NPLV and NPLV1 bringing in $1,120,000 in license fees from it's 28 clubs. $40,000 is the price of being elite, which includes all player registrations. It's a massive gain on the $166,800 paid by the 12 clubs in the final VPL.

It is the community clubs, though, that face the biggest rip-off. With State League One now divided into North West and South East divisions, it will bring in $218,400 to the FFV coffers, a big step up from the $105,600 of 2013. These clubs can be considered very hard done by, paying $9,1000 each. That is approaching what VPL clubs were paying, for what effectively now the third tier of Victorian football. 

It is a third tier they can't be promoted from. It's hard to see what improved services they will get from the FFV, given it has taken until late February for them to be informed of what League they will be in this season and fixtures still being drafted. I can see the NPLV having a dedicated website, or section of the website, but I can't envisage what the SL1NW and SL1SE clubs will get to justify such an impost. On top of that, they still have to cover the individual player registration fees.

State League Division Two will bring in $189,600, up from $182,400. Another small increase comes in State League Division Three with $153,600 eclipsing the $148,800 of 2013. Whereas State League Division Four raked in $249,600 in  2013, this year it will bring in $259,200.

As a consequence of the top tiers being expanded, there will be less money coming from State League Division Five. $124,000 falling short of the $165,300 from twelve months ago. It's a shortfall that can be easily borne, who cares about a fee of $3,100 per club when you can squeeze so many into the $40,000 and $9,100 categories. 

Can we expect the FFV to try and shoehorn more clubs into the upper divisions in the coming years given the bonanza of the current re-branding? How far away is State League Two from going from two divisions of North West and South East to four divisions of North, South, East and West? Not very far when they need to hear another KA-CHING! from the cash registers.

In recent years the VPL went from having a dedicated weekly newspaper and highlights show on Channel 31, as well as a weekly game being streamed live on the internet to nothing. One would expect the restoration of such services to be in the pipeline to justify the substantial amounts paid to them by clubs.

The million dollar question really is what will the clubs get for their money?   


  1. State 5 North and West paying $3100 (up from $2700 last year) to play 21 games instead of 22 this season. That should pay for the Christmas party.

  2. Does not sound like great value for money.