Frustration grows as A-League players kept in the dark
A-LEAGUE players are increasingly frustrated by the lack of clarity about their stalled season, Adelaide United's football director Bruce Djite says.
While other major codes such as the NRL and AFL have announced season resumption timetables, the return of the A-League remains unknown.
Football Federation Australia (FFA) wants the season, which was put on hold in March amid the coronavirus pandemic, to resume and finish in the month of August.
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But players are becoming agitated that no firm time frame for a return to training or the season restart has been detailed.
"The FFA are no doubt doing their best and there's no reason for them to keep us in the dark any more than they need to," Djite told AAP on Tuesday. "But the feedback from the players is of frustration when the Bundesliga is back, the Premier League are going back to training, all before us.
"I would argue that the coronavirus is much worse in Europe than it is in Australia."
A-League players were seeking some certainty after the AFL and NRL detailed aspects of their respective restarts.
"I speak to players as often as possible and the constant is 'hold on a second, what makes us so much more complicated when we have only got a few more games to play?'," Djite said.
"AFL have got their stuff sorted. NRL have got their stuff sorted.
"Foxtel has paid the (latest A-League broadcasting rights) money now - we still haven't got our stuff sorted.
"Obviously the players want to get back to play as soon as possible... They're not saying they want to play tomorrow but they just want to know what the schedule is.
"Maybe legally we're still not guaranteed Fox Sports for the next three years.
"There's a lot of things that probably myself, the clubs and the players don't know about that are happening in the background."
Compounding the agitation in A-League ranks is the expiry of many player contracts at the end of May.
"Besides the financials and the timings and everything, it's also about just a matter of principle," Djite said.
"Players are out of contract on 31 May; getting extended to the end of August, yes, no?
"Players who are out of contract who have signed for another club, where do they sit?
"The one real positive is that the FFA and the PFA (Professional Footballers Australia) are in talks and they have been having talks for some time. "So there is obviously some light at the end of the tunnel."