Football Federation Australia (FFA) has confirmed that the remainder of the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 regular season will go ahead but all matches will be played behind closed doors and with no fans permitted to attend.
FFA Chief Executive Officer, James Johnson, said the decisions taken were designed to protect the 1.96 million members of Australia’s football community, as well as ensure that football’s vast community would be a positive force in helping Australians remain healthy and combat the spread of the virus.
“The scale of football means that we have a key role to play in maintaining the health and well-being of Australians, as well as their families and the wider community,” Chief Executive Office, James Johnson, said.
“We are doing so by allowing people to play, in line with the current Government position, but with additional guidance to further improve social distancing at football fields around the country.”
The decision by the Federal Government to enforce self-isolation for 14 days on all people entering Australia, means that matches involving Melbourne Victory and Wellington Phoenix will not proceed in Rounds 24 and 25 of the Hyundai A-League.
These matches will be re-scheduled and Wellington Phoenix will play all their matches in Australia for the remainder of the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 season.
FFA also confirmed that grassroots football, including all levels of the National Premier Leagues and FFA Cup Preliminary Rounds, will continue to be played at this time. Additional measures, such as social distancing at football matches and increased hygiene procedures, will be implemented to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection or transmission through the football community.
“We have been working closely with our stakeholders, Government health officials and our own chief medical officer to develop our policies for the whole of the game following the COVID-19 outbreak,” CEO Mr Johnson said.
“But the health and safety of all members of the football community, including players, coaches, referees, volunteers, administrators and fans continues to be of paramount importance. We will continue to work with the Government and seek advice as the situation changes.”
The National COVID-19 Working Committee will continue to meet and FFA will provide regular updates to the football community as the situation develops.