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Australia’s A-League moves towards new second division

Australia’s domestic football league is considering a second division to provide more opportunities for emerging players, with a task force set up Monday.

The A-League currently involves 10 teams and will expand over the next two seasons, with Western Melbourne joining in 2019/20 and Sydney-based Macarthur FC a year later.

But there is a lack of opportunity for young players who do not make the grade to develop in a professional environment, with Socceroos coach Graham Arnold saying it was “crucial” to fill the vacuum.

Football Federation Australia (FFA) said a steering committee had been set up to drive the process forward and work on the timetable for a National Second Division.

Arnold will advise on technical matters.

“A robust competition structure will provide a pathway not only for players, but for coaches, referees and administrators,” said FFA technical director Rob Sherman.

“This will ultimately mean Australian football will be better placed to achieve more success internationally.”

The committee, which will draft the competition architecture, including a budget, will report back to the FFA in the coming months.

Earlier this month, Arnold told reporters that players aged between 17 and their early 20s needed somewhere to develop.

“I’m not saying that kids need to play the A-League -– if they’re not good enough to play in the A-league, then they shouldn’t play in the A-League. But give them somewhere to play,” he said.



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