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Football Australia announce new home for Socceroos, Matildas and FFA Cup matches

Football Australia landmark deal

Football Australia have announced a landmark agreement with 10 ViacomCBS which will see Network 10 and its accompanying streaming platform Paramount+ become the new home of National Teams football and the FFA Cup.

In what is the largest Socceroos and Matildas broadcast agreement and the first ever direct commercial free-to-air broadcast deal for Football Australia’s National Teams, the deal will see all Westfield Matildas and Socceroos matches outside of the FIFA World Cup Finals – plus the next four seasons of the FFA Cup from the Round of 32 onwards – broadcast via Network 10 and Paramount+.

The agreement encompasses the media rights for all national teams (Socceroos, Westfield Matildas, Young Socceroos, Westfield Young Matildas, Joeys, and Westfield Junior Matildas) owned or controlled by Football Australia, as well as AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar, AFC Asian Cups, and other AFC tournaments until 31 December 2024. In an effort to enable the creation of this compelling package of rights, Football Australia acquired the rights to the AFC competitions from the AFC.

The deal, signed and completed today and commencing from August 1, will cement 10 ViacomCBS, who are also the current rights holders of the A-League and Westfield W-League, as the new home of football.

For the fans, this means that extensive coverage of Australia’s National Teams and the FFA Cup (in addition to the A- League and Westfield W-League) will be available on 10, 10 Bold and 10 Play, as well as Paramount+, which will be available in Australia from 11 August, for $8.99 per month.

Football Australia CEO James Johnson was delighted to have reached an agreement with ViacomCBS in what comes as a significant moment for the domestic game.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome Network 10 and Paramount+ to the Australian football family. This is an enormous vote of confidence in the future direction of football in Australia including the bold 15-year vision and strategic agenda we have set for the game,” he said.

“It is also an endorsement of both the strength in the Westfield Matildas and the Socceroos brands and recognition of the exciting international schedule they face over the next 3.5 years.

“This is a wonderful result for our game and after a challenging 2020, provides our sport with greater financial certainty in the years ahead and will ensure that our fans will be able to continue to watch our Westfield Matildas and Socceroos wherever they are and at the same time, provide a platform to launch a re-invigorated FFA Cup.

“All sections of the community and business have felt the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, and this partnership announcement today, along with other commercial announcements recently with Priceline, rebel and Commonwealth Bank, are symbolic cornerstone moments for our sport.

“This is the first time Football Australia has been able to secure a direct broadcast deal of this nature with a commercial free-to-air partner, which provides the game with vital exposure on the primary channels of Network 10 and a variety of other platforms, including the soon to be launched Paramount+.

“No sport has the power to unite all Australians quite like football can. The Socceroos and Westfield Matildas have created many magical and iconic moments for our nation over the years and this partnership gives us the ability to connect two of Australia’s biggest sports brands with Australia’s favourite national knock out community tournament, the FFA Cup by showcasing this content to a greater audience and across multiple platforms. This exciting partnership also unifies the sport, by bringing all parts of Australian football together, including the A-League and Westfield W- League, on Network 10 and Paramount+, making it easier for the Australian football fan and beginning a new era for Australian football.

“We thank Network 10 and Paramount+ for backing the game in such a profound way and we look forward to a prosperous partnership where we can connect and engage with the biggest club participation base in Australia, and inspire them with our Westfield Matildas and Socceroos via a unique viewing experience. I would also like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to the enormous contribution that Patrick Delany and Fox Sports have made to Australian football over the last 15-years. Fox Sport’s commitment, leadership and significant investment has helped evolve our game to where it is today, and for that we will always be grateful”.

Under this agreement, 10 ViacomCBS will be granted media rights to the following content:

  • Matildas Friendly Internationals (home and away)
  • Socceroos Friendly Internationals (home and away)
  • U23 Men’s Friendly Internationals (home)
  • Socceroos’ 2026 FIFA World Cup Asian Qualifier Round 2 matches (home)
  • Other Football Australia controlled Youth National Teams matches (home)
  • FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Asian Qualifiers – Round Three (including prospective Play-Off matches)
  • AFC Asian Cup China 2023 Finals
  • AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 Finals
  • AFC U23 Asian Cup Finals 2022, 2024
  • AFC Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament (Final Round) for Paris Olympics 2024
  • AFC U20 Asian Cup Finals 2023
  • AFC U17 Asian Cup Finals 2023
  • AFC U20 Women’s Asian Cup Finals 2022 and 2024
  • AFC U17 Women’s Asian Cup Finals 2022 and 2024
  • AFC Futsal Asian Cup Finals 2022, 2024
  • AFC Solidarity Cup 2024
  • A-League Club Play-Off matches to enter FFA Cup Round of 32
  • All FFA Cup matches played from Round of 32 onwards, including the Round of 16, Quarter Finals, Semi-Finals and the FFA Cup Final
  • All non-Australian matches across AFC competitions, including Round 3 FIFA World Cup Qualifying matches and AFC Asian Cup matches

AFC reveals logo for the 2023 Asian Cup tournament

Asian Cup

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC), together with the Local Organising Committee (LOC), have confirmed the logo for the AFC Asian Cup China 2023.

The logo was revealed via a dazzling and immersive display that showcased the vibrant new design through projection mapping and Augmented Reality, as well as being projected on select iconic buildings across Shanghai’s skyline.

The launch, which was staged at the competition’s first completed stadium – Shanghai Pudong Football Stadium – also revealed the Host City logos in the first on-ground milestone event of the tournament, which will be held from June 16 to July 16, 2023.

The 18th edition of the tournament will see the Socceroos hoping to improve on their quarter-final loss to the United Arab Emirates in 2019.

In a special video message presented during the event, the AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa made the following statement:

“Over the years, each host nation has left a significant mark on Asian football, and we know that China PR will stage our greatest ever tournament in 2023.

“The AFC is pleased to mark our latest milestones and, on behalf of the Asian football family, I would like to congratulate the Local Organising Committee and the Venue Organising Committees of the 10 host cities for their commitment and efforts.

“The LOC continues to make great progress with the preparations to stage a memorable event, and I wish the Chinese Football Association, the LOC, the VOCs and all our stakeholders the very best of success in staging a truly world-class event.”

The 10 dynamic beams in the logo, which emanate from the bottom to form the image of the sun rising from the East, symbolise all the host cities of the AFC Asian Cup China 2023™ – underlining the ever-growing scale and future legacy of the tournament, which will be held in 10 different cities in one nation for the first time in Asian football history.

The process of localising the design and concept, in line with the master brands, was further influenced by the LOC’s proposal to embody ‘Light’ as a symbol and beacon of hope to overcome adversity, particularly pertinent during these challenging times and aptly emphasising the unifying force of Asia’s flagship men’s tournament in rallying together passionate fans and teams from the world’s most diverse continent.

Ivan Franjic: “I’m thankful and grateful that I was able to live my dream”

Socceroos Ivan Franjic

Ivan Franjic’s arrival at historic National Premier Leagues Victoria side Heidelberg United has come via an unconventional journey to say the least.

From his early beginnings in the then-named Victorian Premier League with the likes of St Albans Saints and Melbourne Knights, to playing for Russian side FC Torpedo Moscow, to playing in the third-largest urban agglomeration in Korea with Daegu FC, Franjic’s career has certainly been one to savour.

Whilst his career has seen injury setbacks, a blocked loan and unpaid wages with Torpedo Moscow – and the discovery of a potentially career-threatening rare inflammatory condition known as myocarditis in 2016 – Franjic is grateful to be where he is today and to have had the footballing experiences he’s had.

“I’ve been very fortunate with the success I’ve had over my travels, and I’ve experienced some different countries,” he said.

“It’s been a great journey and I’m thankful and grateful that I was able to live my dream and play for the Socceroos at a World Cup. Some Championships as well, so, can’t complain at all.”

Torpedo Moscow

And as for why Franjic opted to return to the NPL Victoria to take up an opportunity with Heidelberg United, a family connection and the quality of the league spoke for itself.

“My brother has played in the NPL for a fair bit and I’ve watched a few of his games. If you look at the FFA Cup you’ve always got a Victorian team in the semi-finals, so it must be saying something about how good the standard of the league is,” he said.

“I know the coach George Katsakis and he called me and my brother and said he was interested in signing us. And obviously Heidelberg have had success over the last few years where they’ve won a lot of trophies, so, they’re wanting to build a great team to have another successful year once again.

“Whenever you go to Heidelberg you see that they have a decent following and that everyone gets behind them, so it’ll be good. I’m looking forward to playing in the NPL this year and to finally be playing with my brother after all these years.”

Heidelberg United

Next year’s Victorian NPL season will mark 13 years since Franjic departed his then-Victorian Premier League side Oakleigh Cannons to take up an injury-replacement contract offer with Ange Postecoglou’s Brisbane Roar.

It was under the now-Celtic FC coach where Franjic impressed the Roar faithful and built a platform to launch himself into a regular starting berth with the Socceroos at right-back.

As a three-time A-League Men’s Championship winner with Brisbane, three-time Premiership winner with the Roar (twice) and Perth Glory (once), as well as an Asian Cup winner, Franjic has certainly been a key cog in some of Australian football’s most historic sides.

“Obviously, winning the Asian Cup is a massive achievement, it’s similar to someone winning the Euros or the Copa America. But I think in Australia, with soccer not being the number one sport, it’s always hard to get the media buzz of AFL and NRL because they’ve got a huge following,” he said.

“But when you look back on it you don’t realise how high of an achievement it actually was against Asia’s best.

“I’d had Ange as a coach for a few years and he’s no doubt one of the best managers I’d ever worked under. The whole buzz of being in Brazil, with security all around the hotel and obviously Brazil is a football-mad nation, so, everywhere you went people were following you.

“It was exciting, and I thought Australia gave a good account of themselves without getting results in that tournament.”

Each of these remarkable honours were earnt between globetrotting stints with Torpedo Moscow, Melbourne City and Daegu. But before returning to the National Premier Leagues Victoria, Franjic made one final stopover with newly-joined A-League Men’s expansion side Macarthur FC. He gave credit to the side that he helped in their foundation.

“It was no doubt a challenge starting up a new club from fresh and giving it a go. Credit has to go out to all of the staff and the owners; they did an amazing job for a club in their first year in terms of facilities and the stadium. Compared to other clubs that have come into the A-League they were very good,” he said.

Macarthur FC

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