New A-League franchise struggles for funds

Major media personalities are assisting Football Federation Australia to raise equity for Central Coast (NSW), one of the eight-only franchises in the inaugural A-League. The Mariners are A$2.5 million short of their $5 million capital start-up target for the new national competition which starts on 26 August.

Competing radio men, John Singleton and Alan Jones, were united to encourage local businessmen to purchase at least one of forty shareholding packages valued at A$50,000 each. Singleton reportedly has pledged A$1 million of his own money over four years, with Westfield (a shopping mall developer associated with FFA chairman Frank Lowy), chipping in the same figure and Future Schools – which sells education packages through the internet – a further A$1.3 million.

"Failure is not an option. All the ingredients are here. It's a well-coached team that has a great stadium – and there are 13,000 junior players in the area. We put our faith in the Coast and we want the people here to put their faith in us," FFA CEO, John O'Neill, said.