FFA Statement on Congress Review Working Group Report

Football Federation Australia (FFA) today acknowledged the completion and submission of the report of the Congress Review Working Group (CRWG) to FIFA and the AFC.

The report was the culmination of seven weeks of extensive consultation by the CRWG, and included input from other stakeholders in the football community.

The CRWG was independently chaired by Judith Griggs and comprised two A-League Club representatives, four Member Federation representatives, a PFA representative, and a representative of the FFA Board.

From the outsetFFA has supported expansion of its Congress to reflect the evolution of football in Australia and balance the interests of each part of the game, including significant movement towards gender equality at all levels of governance. FFA has also embraced the need for a new A-League governance and operating model that benefits the whole of football.

At the commencement of the CRWG process, the independent FFA Board agreed on a number of founding principles that it considered to be in the best interests of the game. These guiding principles, which were submitted to the CRWG, included:

  • a bigger and broader membership in line with international benchmarks
  • embedded and genuine gender equality, from the FFA Board down through all football institutions in Australia
  • the immediate admission of Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
  • a balanced Congress which reflects the significance and contribution of community and professional football
  • clear delineation between the role of Congress and the responsibilities of an independent FFA board

FFA Chairman Steven Lowy AM said that FFA is committed to working to ensure the governance of the game continues to evolve in the best interests of the whole of football.

“FFA has been supportive of the CRWG process from the beginning and is committed to working constructively with all stakeholders. There are many elements of the report which are positive steps and wholly supported by the FFA Board. However, there are also some crucial aspects of the report which the FFA Board does not believe are in the best interests of the game and are inconsistent with its guiding principles,” he said.

FFA totally rejected any suggestion that it has sought to interfere with the work of the CRWG or pressure the decision-making of stakeholders. 

“There have been some media reports that suggest FFA has sought to unduly influence the work of the CRWG. These claims are completely false. FFA has always encouraged all stakeholders to openly debate and carefully consider these important issues particularly given the inevitable difficulty of only having some Member Federations on the CRWG,” concluded Lowy. 

FFA remains committed to working constructively with FIFA, AFC and all the stakeholders to produce the best outcome for the game as a whole.

A copy of the FFA Board’s guiding governance principles submitted to the CRWG is available here.