Saturday, 24 September 2016

Failing Football Victoria

The end of the local football season has sadly seen Football Federation Victoria's incompetence rise to the fore yet again.

It began with the social media coverage of the annual Gold Medal Night. For some reason, the tweets announcing the winners were 15-20 minutes behind the actual announcements and presentations made on the night. It was another case of club volunteers putting the FFV professionals to shame.

For some inexplicable reason, the winners were announced with pictorial tweets which did not include their names (or that of their club) in either the tweet or the pictures within:

Even if you happen to know every player in the NPLV, NPL2 and NPLVW by sight, who would you say won the NPLW Player's Player of the Year Award?
There are two players in the picture, was it a tie? Or is the winner the player on the left, or is it the one on the right? Why the need to be so cryptic? Does someone really need to be told that the major part of the announcements was to actually name the winners?

A recurring theme on this blog has been the lack of due respect the governing bodies of the game have shown even when they try and honour people. A look through the #GMN16tag on Twitter will see no mention of the Hall of Fame inductees from the official accounts on the night. Thankfully there were those willing to congratulate the great Jimmy Armstrong on his honour:

Sadly the other two inductees on the night were neglected. Two weeks after the event there has yet to be an update to the Hall of Fame page on the FFV website. Is that good enough?

It took almost a full two weeks for the FFV to publish the final vote tallies for the Gold Medals. It was just the final result, not a match by match listing of the votes. Given there are people claiming players listed as ineligible due to suspension actually weren't, does the FFV have something to hide in opting not to publish the votes? Once again, is this good enough? A club can hand out a list of votes for their Best and Fairest at a Presentation Night, why can't the FFV?

More damaging was the shambolic organisation of the NPLV Grand Final at Lakeside Stadium. Huge lines for entry, with not enough ticket booths open. People still unable to get in even as the game approached half-time. Those that managed to get in forced into overfilling the only part of the ground open to them, with the stand on the opposite side to the main grandstand and both ends behind the goals closed.

Half an hour into the game those waiting outside were apparently given free entry, but it wasn't until after half-time that people were able to spread out beyond the packed stand. Embarrassing for the league's showpiece day, and damaging in terms of the bad taste these kinds of things leave in people's mouths. I really feel for anyone who convinced someone who may have been reluctant to go to the game to attend only to be greeted by such chaos. The FFV is supposed to grow the game, I'm not sure how discouraging spectators works in with that ideal.

The weekend after the Grand Final saw various State League Finals, Semi-Finals and Play-Offs, as well at the NPLV Promotion-Relegation Play-Off between North Geelong and Richmond. Is there any chance these games could have been afforded some promotion via articles on the FFV website or the NPLV website? It was only via searching through the menus of the results/fixtures section of the FFV website that I discovered the State League Division Two Grand Final was part of a double header with the NPLV Promotion-Relegation Play-Off at Jack Edwards Reserve, Oakleigh.

Speaking to people at the Grand Final between Altona Magic and Mornington, it was apparent many did not know there was another game afterwards (albeit with a one hour gap allowed for extra-time and possible penalties). Similarly those attending the second game did not know there was an earlier one. The FFV may have mastered relegation, but they have no idea about promotion.

Are crowds something of an inconvenience for the FFV? They certainly were for the "hosts" of the games at Oakleigh. Shortly after the arrival of busloads of North Geelong supporters, the clubrooms were closed for a private function and no food was available for purchase.

Let's paint the picture: It's 6.30 p.m. People have been on a bus or driving in a car for over an hour. They arrive at the game and are told they can't have any food. Should they then miss what is the biggest game of their season to satisfy their hunger, or should they suffer?

Is it good enough?

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