Friday, December 29, 2006
Sydney and the Salary Cap
Let’s clear the ground first. Yes, deducting points once the finals series is underway would be a farcical punishment and cause for considerable suspicion. Yes, Frank Lowy’s position as both FFA chairman and majority shareholder of Sydney FC (if only by proxy) is an obvious and very worrying conflict of interest. Incidentally, many Sydney FC fans are among the worried ones on that last point.
But there are a couple of things that need to be cleared up. Or rather, a couple of convenient myths that need to be debunked.
Myth No. 1: Sydney FC has already been found guilty a second time.
Nothing has been determined as yet. Whether the investigations have been deliberately delayed until the finals series may still be a matter for speculation, but it is wrong to imply (as Farina does) that the matter is already settled and that the FFA is merely stalling over the punishment.
Myth No. 2: Sydney FC is a repeat offender.
Language is a wonderful tool, and it can be used to inform, entertain…and mislead:
You have a club that has blatantly breached the cap, not once but twice.
Implication: that, after being let off lightly in August this year, Sydney FC have gone and dunnit again.
Let’s get things straight. Speak up, Mr. Carroll:
After three months of investigations, FFA is now prepared to act. Should the governing body decide any breaches warrant stronger action, Sydney could lose more than one point. "Yes, there are on-going investigations into salary cap breaches in season 05/06 and, ideally, we'd like to make a ruling before Christmas," said A-League head of operations Matt Carroll.
That’s right: the investigations relate to last season. In other words, George Perry et al. would have had to travel back in time in order to “re-offend”. And just on a small related matter, the previous CEO Tim Parker does not deserve the criticism that has come his way, given that the contracts under investigation were drawn up before he even arrived at the club.
Speaking as a fan, I’m prepared to accept any punishment the FFA deems suitable for Sydney FC, and, should the points deduction be delayed until the finals series, I’ll admit that the whole situation is anomalous (to put it politely). But let’s keep things in perspective for the moment.
Doesn't it mean that they offended twice in the same year (05-06)? Completely possible to have two breaches in the one season - they were caught for the one and now have been caught for another. Going back in time is not necessary!
Both breaches were, to the best of my knowledge, to do with the initial contract arrangements offered to Zdrilic and perhaps others.
Besides, the clear implication of the article is that Sydney have been warned and yet offended again afterwards. Misleading.
I would not worry about Farina: I'd say there were people in Queensland who will vote Farina out of his position with their feet next year. That was a shocking display last night from QR, and atypical of Farina's lousy preparation mind-set.
Three points at Newcastle and a win next week, and the points deduction is a distant memory.
Sydney won the league last year having spent more money than they were allowed to.....A 3 point deduction is frankly getting off a bit lightly.
If the salary cap is not going to be effectively policed, what is the point of having it at all. Well done to the FFA.
My not-so-well-informed view is that they should punish last seasons results only.
The way to do it that doesn't damage the league any more is to have their ACL spot taken away and given to the Coasties. Its only pissing in the wind now to suggest what should have happened. And I'm sure the ACL would arc up and consider taking the spot away.
Yeah, it's funny, everyone's agonising over the three points, but a six-figure fine will make things incredibly difficult for us with the ACL in mind.
...Three points at Newcastle and a win next week, and the points deduction is a distant memory....
...If the salary cap is not going to be effectively policed, what is the point of having it at all....
Completely agree. In the broader interests of football in Oz, it's probably for the best that the FFA have done this. Certainly puts any accusations of partiality to rest.
...The way to do it that doesn't damage the league any more is to have their ACL spot taken away and given to the Coasties....
Don't think the AFC would allow that now, and it'd be very unfair in any case, since SFC have probably started negotiating contracts for next season based on ACL participation.
It's an arrogant cheap shot at a very inappropriate time.
To be ignored.
Don't get me wrong. There is jealousy there. I'd like my team to have a winning formula.