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The FA forced into job cuts amid Covid-19

Grassroots football in England has been suspended as the country heads into a four-week lockdown from November 5 until December 2.

The Football Association (FA), English soccer’s governing body, has been forced into 124 job cuts as they try to fight their losses due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

FA chairman Greg Clarke has confirmed that all areas of the organisation will be affected, as a redundancy programme will see a large number of positions removed.

“All areas of the FA will be affected,” he said.

“We need to save UK£75 million a year and we’ve got a UK£300 million potential hole to fill over the next four years.”

Of the total 124 jobs to be made redundant, 42 of those will be achieved by stopping further recruitment. It leaves 82 positions that will have to be cut in order to save costs.

It’s been reported that the FA is bracing for a potential deficit of UK£300 million (AU$536 million) over the next four years due to the coronavirus.

“We have a responsibility to preserve our core functions that regulate and serve English football,” FA chief executive Mark Bullingham said.

“We also have a duty to support our men’s and women’s senior teams in their efforts to win major tournaments. That means we have set out in our proposals some difficult choices because we do not think we can afford to do all the things that we did before.

“We believe the impact of this crisis is to force us to focus more than ever on our key priorities.”

Despite the English professional leagues getting their season restarts underway recently, the FA has already lost revenue given it’s the first bit of league action since the nationwide shutdown in March.

“It might seem that football has weathered the storm by getting the top-flight men’s game playing again,” Bullingham said.

“However, unfortunately the past few months have impacted the FA severely and we have lost a significant amount of money that we can never recoup.”

Associations such as the FA have the opportunity to receive a loan from Fifa, under the global governing body’s Covid-19 relief plan. However, it’s been reported that the FA has opted against taking advantage of the loan on offer by Fifa, despite them being forced into the job cuts.

Liam Watson is the Managing Editor at Soccerscene. He reports widely on football policy, industry matters and technology.

Paramount+ to release Sky Blue: Inside Sydney FC documentary

Sydney FC

Paramount+ will debut the first of its locally produced sporting documentaries on Friday, 30 September, bringing Australian subscribers a four-part exclusive behind-the-scenes look inside Sydney FC.

Produced by Mint Pictures and narrated by Golden Globe winner and Sydney FC fan Anthony LaPaglia, the Paramount+ Original series will be titled Sky Blue: Inside Sydney FC. The series will take viewers inside Sydney FC men’s and women’s teams during the most transformational year in the club’s history – the club’s 2021/22 A-League campaigns.

Sky Blue: Inside Sydney FC is told through a cast of eclectic characters and those who matter most. Players, coaches, backroom staff and fans have all been captured exclusive on and off the pitch, with the documentary serving as the first time a documentary series has followed both the men’s and the women’s teams over the course of a tumultuous season.

The four-part series will give viewers real-life sporting drama that delivers triumph and disaster, hope and despair, agony, and ecstasy – the perfect binge-worthy football documentary ahead of the return of the Isuzu UTE A-League and Liberty A-League seasons.

Over the last 12 months, Paramount+ has been Australia’s fastest-growing streaming service and has hosted 981 hours of Australian entertainment content, 734 hours of Australian sport, and has seen 11 Australian commissions announced since its launch.

Football Queensland opens nominations for 2022 Football in Queensland Awards

Football Queensland

Football Queensland will celebrate the outstanding achievements of individuals and clubs at every level of the game as part of the 2022 Football in Queensland Awards.

A new integrated state-wide format for the 2022 season will see award winners recognised at regional level, across a number of categories before representing their region as nominees for the equivalent awards at the state level – to be presented at the Football in Queensland Awards Night.

“2022 has been an incredibly exciting year for football here in Queensland as we’ve seen the roll-out of connected competitions, providing brand new opportunities for players and clubs across every region as part of the Future of Football 2020+ reform implementation,” FQ CEO Robert Cavallucci said in a statement.

“As we continue to unite the game across the state, Football Queensland is delighted to recognise the fantastic achievements of participants and clubs across each of our regions at local Grand Finals, before our highest achieving community winners are celebrated at state level at the Football in Queensland Awards Night.

“2022 will see a number of new awards presented at community level in each region, including the Protect Our Game Service Award for an individual and club and Service to Football Gold and Platinum Awards.

“In line with the introduction of the connected football pyramid, we’re also excited to present brand new awards at state level recognising the achievements of those from advanced competitions across Queensland including awards for Junior Player of the Year, Academy of the Year and Technical Director of the Year, among others.

“After another challenging year for all involved in our game with seasons extended across many parts of the state due to the weather, we’re looking forward to acknowledging the hard work and achievements of members of our football community, from players to coaches, volunteers and referees, with the 2022 Football in Queensland Awards.”

Nominations are now open for the Community and Service to Football Awards which will be presented at regional level, before winners go on to represent their region as nominees for the state awards.

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