Football Australia has released the second and final iteration of the ‘XI Principles for the future of Australian football’ (XI Principles) document following a rigorous and collaborative period of consultation with the national football family.
The XI Principles will provide guidance and influence decision making at Football Australia, with the focus of Football Australia to commence – and in several cases continue – operationalising the proposed measures over the short, medium, and long-term.
The XI Principles takes a holistic view of Australian football and the challenges facing it and will replace the Whole of Football Plan published in 2015. The XI Principles will guide us strategically and operationally as we look to fulfil the bold and innovative 15-year vision that remains from the first edition.”
Football Australia Chief Executive Officer, James Johnson
PROGRESSING THE XI PRINCIPLES
Pleasingly, Football Australia has either delivered on or commenced enacting numerous proposed measures and interconnected initiatives since the first version of the XI Principles was released in July 2020. These include:
- Reaching agreement on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Football Coaches Australia (FCA);
- Advancing plans for a National ‘Home of Football’ in Sydney and supporting Football Victoria to secure funding towards the ‘Home of the Matildas’ project at La Trobe University in Victoria;
- Securing hosting rights for two (2) AFC youth women’s qualification tournaments in regional Australia (Cessnock and Shepparton);
- Advancing internal and external discussions regarding aligning the national football calendar and the evolution of the National Premier Leagues (NPL);
- Appointing Trevor Morgan (National Technical Director), Ron Smith (Technical Advisor), and Rae Dower (Women’s Technical Advisor) to key technical positions;
- Appointing Jane Fernandez as Football Australia’s Head of FIFA Women’s World Cup Office and Peter Filopoulos as Football Australia’s Head of Marketing, Corporate Affairs and Communications;
- Advancing the unbundling of the professional leagues as APFCA assume more control over professional league operational matters such as the negotiation of the Leagues CBA and its commercial rights sales;
- Finalising a new National Teams CBA which maintains gender equality principles;
- On 29 September 2020, Football Australia announced that it had appointed highly experienced coach, Tony Gustavsson, as the new Head Coach of the Westfield Matildas for a four-year term which will include four major tournaments - the Tokyo (2021) and Paris (2024) Olympic Games, as well as the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 and the FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia/New Zealand 2023™. A two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup™ winner and Olympic Gold Medallist with the US women’s national team, Gustavsson brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role;
- Entering into new commercial agreements for the Westfield Matildas;
- Making progress internally on the development of a White Paper into the domestic transfer system to implement the recommendation of the Starting XI made in June 2020;
- Developing a 2021 Domestic Match Calendar as a means to connect all levels of Australian football;
- Work undertaken to enhance Australia’s Coach Education framework;
- A new naming rights partner for the Australian Women's National Team and investor in grassroots football, commencing on 1 August;
- Commencing on the path to reconciliation with the initiation of the RAP process; and
- Negotiating a landmark media rights agreement with 10 ViacomCBS for the broadcast of matches of the Australian National Teams and the FFA Cup.
Football Australia will now, in consultation and collaboration with the game’s stakeholders, continue the process of operationalising the XI Principles. The XI Principles will provide the impetus to crystalise ongoing matters and drive a fresh and exciting agenda. This will include developing a unified direction for the game which will speak to the ‘Who’, ‘When’ and the ‘How’.
The final version of the XI Principles for the future of Australian football can be downloaded below.
 Australian Professional Football Clubs Association
 Collective Bargaining Agreement