FFA To Trial 'State of Origin' Concept
There has been shock around Australia with the news that Football Federation Australia will be suspending the Hyundai A-League for a 10 week period during the 2016/17 season and heading in a 'bold new direction', as claimed by FFA boss David Gallop. It has been announced that in the A-League's place for that time will be a 'State of Origin' competition contested by the states of Australia.
Gallop spoke to the press earlier today about the move which will see the A-League season pushed back to mid-November.
"We wanted to put on a showcase of the skills of the Australian footballer. We worked for quite a few years contacting players and agreeing with stadiums, but now we're ready to bring the people a State of Origin."
There have been State of Origin competitions in two of Australia's football codes, with rugby league's State of Origin arguably the country's biggest annual sporting clash. AFL's State of Origin has not been contested since 1999 but was also a brief affair, with just one game a season compared to rugby's three. Football's State of Origin however promises to be a 10 week affair.
The states participating are yet to be finalised although some are speculating that the 5 major states (excluding Tasmania) will be set to compete for the trophy. The format of the competition is yet to be confirmed.
This is a bold new venture for Australian football, and whether or not it can be a success, should be a major talking point for years to come.