NPLV bid scrapped, for now

THE Gippsland Soccer League will not submit an expression of interest to establish a franchise in the National Premier Leagues Victoria competition.

A lack of support was cited as the main cause for not moving forward, as well as the short deadline enforced by Football Federation Australia to submit the EOI.

The league had scheduled a final meeting on Monday to gather whole-hearted support from the Gippsland soccer community to commit to the scheme, however the meeting never eventuated.

“We had some people show support leading up to the meeting, but nowhere near enough to move ahead, so we saw no point in calling another meeting,” GSL vice chair Peter Boyes said.

“And we won’t be pursuing a licence because we don’t have the resources available and the time frame was too short.”

If the GSL was successful in its bid, it would be required to secure funds and establish an administrative board to oversee the franchise, all within months of the proposed 7 February announcement of licenses.

Successful applicants would be required to field under 12s, 13s, 14s, 15s, 16s, 18s, 20s and seniors teams in the initial season, with under 17s, women and girl’s sides all to be included in 2015.

The franchisees would then be bound to the new competition for a minimum of three years when a promotion/relegation system with FFV state leagues would be introduced.

Boyes said at the end of the initial three-year stage the GSL may reconsider applying for the NPLV.

“In the meantime the GSL will focus on its juniors and its youth teams in the coming years in a bid to build them up to a level where they can be competitive in the NPLV,” he said.

“The juniors and youth in three years time would be at a good point and competitive.”

Boyes said the GSL would also investigate the option of introducing a women’s team.