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Sydney A-League bids hit trouble

Football Federation Australia CEO Ben Buckley admits two bids coming out of Sydney to gain the 12th licence into the A-League have hit a snag.

Businessman Joe Meissner withdrew his bid last week whilst uncertainty surrounds a second Sydney bid after the murder of businessman Michael McGurk who was believed to be financially backing a franchise linked with Australian international Lucas Neill.

Buckley says that the two 'failed' bids would not affect the league, especially with interest coming from Canberra and Wollongong, but said if need be, the competition will go ahead with 11 teams from next year until the right bid is proposed.

''We've always said and maintained that if the current bidding consortia can't meet the criteria that we set - and we make no apologies for setting some very strict and prudent criteria, particularly in relation to the financial capacity of the teams - that we would go forward with 11 teams,'' Buckley said. ''I don't think the competition will suffer from that in the short term.

''Ideally we want to get to 12 teams, but we will do that when it's right and appropriate, and the prospective [bidders] have met all the criteria.''

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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