FFA Cup

The Football Federation Australia Cup, commonly known as the FFA Cup, is the national soccer knockout cup competition in Australia. This annual competition is organised by the Football Federation Australia.

FFA Cup
FFA Cup logo.svg
Organising bodyFootball Federation Australia
Founded24 February 2014; 6 years ago (2014-02-24)
RegionAustralia
New Zealand
Number of teams765 (in 2020)
Current championsAdelaide United
(3rd title)
Most successful club(s)Adelaide United (3 titles)
Television broadcastersFox Sports
WebsiteFFA Cup
2020 FFA Cup

The FFA Cup comprises teams from the top division, the A-League, as well as those from lower tiers in the Australian soccer league system.[1] Teams enter in progressive stages, with qualifying rounds culminating with the competition proper, starting with the Round of 32. Each state and territory-based member federation is granted a team allocation for entry into the main competition, joining clubs from the A-League. Every Australian-based A-League club was initially guaranteed entry into the Round of 32; following the latest expansion of the league, a play-off will be conducted between the lowest-ranked teams to ensure that only 10 A-League teams achieve qualification.[2]

Since the Australian soccer league system currently provides no promotion and relegation mechanism between the first and lower divisions, the competition's appeal partially stems from the fact that it is the only way that A-League and lower-tier clubs can play competitive matches.

Adelaide United has three titles while Melbourne Victory, Melbourne City and Sydney FC have won one title each. The current champions are Adelaide United after defeating Melbourne City in the 2019 Final.

HistoryEdit

Australia has a long history of regional and state-based knockout cup competitions. However, a sustainable national knockout cup competition that encompassed clubs on all levels of Australian league system has been hard to realise. Prior to the FFA Cup, the first and only Australian national knockout tournament was the Australia Cup. The Australia Cup was founded in 1962 but was abolished in 1968 after just seven seasons of competition. In 1977 a knockout competition was founded to run in parallel with the now defunct National Soccer League (NSL). The NSL Cup involved Australian association football clubs competing in the then top-flight NSL and limited clubs from state based competitions. The NSL Cup ceased after the 1996–97 tournament. An A-League Pre-Season Challenge Cup competition ran between 2005–2008 but involved only the teams from the A-League and was not a traditional knockout format.[3]

The FFA Cup was previously scheduled to commence in 2013, though after suffering numerous delays due to FFA's 2012 television coverage deal and rising cost concerns the competition was put on hold.[4][5] On 29 August 2013, it was announced that a national FFA Cup would commence in 2014, after what would be two years of organising the knock out competition.[6] On 14 October 2013, FFA announced that it had appointed Sam Chadwick as General Manager of the FFA Cup.[7] On 24 February 2014, the FFA Cup was formally launched by David Gallop.[8]

The first member federation club to qualify for the FFA Cup was Tuggeranong United from the Australian Capital Territory. Tuggeranong United qualified for the 2014 FFA Cup as the winners of the 2013 ACT Federation Cup.[9] The first games in the tournament proper occurred on 29 July 2014, with four games from the Round of 32 played concurrently. In 2014 former three time NSL Champions Adelaide City became the first semi-professional state-league club to defeat a professional A-League club, defeating Western Sydney Wanderers 1–0.

There have previously been plans for the FFA Cup winners to qualify for the AFC Champions League competition, although this is yet to occur.[10][11]

The 2020 competition was cancelled on 3 July 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia.[12]

EligibilityEdit

Up to and including the 2019 edition, the 32 teams that make up the FFA Cup competition proper have been the 10 A-League teams with the remaining 22 teams composed of various semi-professional and amateur qualifiers, referred to as "Member Federation Clubs", from each of the state federations, with the A-League clubs enter the competition at the Round of 32.[13]

The number of clubs representing each federation is determined by player registration numbers in each jurisdiction, and reviewed annually. The Northern Territory did not participate in the inaugural competition, however have been represented since 2015.[10]

From the 2015 edition of the competition onwards the National Premier Leagues Champion of the previous year, also qualifies for the FFA Cup Round of 32. The first club to qualify via this method was North Eastern MetroStars from South Australia who won the 2014 National Premier Leagues Finals Series.[14]

For the 2021 edition, the two new expansion A-League clubs (Macarthur FC and Western United) will appear in the tournament for the first time.

Federation Affiliated Competition Round of 32 Qualifiers
2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
Football Federation Australia A-League 10 10 10 10 10 10
National Premier Leagues 1 1 1 1 1
Capital Football (ACT) Federation Cup 1 1 1 1 1 1
Northern NSW Football Previously linked with the NNSWF State Cup 2 2 2 2 2 2
Football NSW Waratah Cup 7 5 5 5 5 5
Football Federation Northern Territory Sport Minister's Cup 1 1 1 1 1
Football Queensland Previously linked with the Canale Cup 4 4 4 4 4 4
Football Federation South Australia Federation Cup 1 1 1 1 1 1
Football Federation Tasmania Milan Lakoseljac Cup 1 1 1 1 1 1
Football Federation Victoria Dockerty Cup 4 4 4 4 4 4
Football West (WA) State Cup 2 2 2 2 2 2
Total Entrants 631 648 704 735 781 736 765

FormatEdit

The competition proper is a 32-team knockout tournament with pairings for each round drawn based on a seeding system to ensure progression of teams from Member Federations.

Replays are not used in the FFA Cup. In the event of a match being drawn after the completion of 90 minutes, extra time is played, then a penalty shoot-out if required.[13] In some early rounds, games can go straight to penalties if tied at 90 minutes.[15]

A draw for each round is made from the Round of 32 to the Semi-Finals. Clubs are allocated into various pots depending on the clubs method of qualification and the specific round of competition.[13] The draw also determines which teams will play at home. If a Member Federation Club draws an A-League team, the Member Federation Club will host the fixture. However, if two clubs at the same level are drawn together, the first teams drawn will host.[10]

Wellington Phoenix have additional restrictions imposed as they are a New Zealand-based team, and must play all of their matches in Australia, away from home.[16]

Unlike the usual application of seeds – where a draw is made to ensure that the top seeds don't meet until the latter stages of the competition – the draw for the FFA Cup is seeded in such a way that it ensures the progression of Member Federation Clubs to later rounds. This ensures at least three Member Federation Clubs will qualify for the Quarter Finals with one club guaranteed to make the Semi Final.[13]

  • The inaugural 2014 FFA Cup Final was held as a mid-week fixture on Tuesday 16 December 2014, in order to minimise the impact on the scheduling of the 2014–15 A-League season, already disrupted by Australia hosting the 2015 AFC Asian Cup.[10][16]
  • For the following year, the 2015 FFA Cup Final was played on a weekend date free of other 2015–16 A-League games, to "emphasise the importance of the Final".[17]
  • Since 2016, the Final has returned to being a mid-week fixture.
  • For the 2021 edition, the bottom four teams in the 2020–21 A-League season will playoff (9th vs. 12th, and 10th vs. 11th), to maintain the total number of A-League teams at 10 for the Round of 32.[18]

TrophyEdit

At the end of the final, the winning team is presented with a trophy, known as the "FFA Cup Trophy", which they will hold until the following year's final.

The trophy is a large traditional cup style trophy with an intentional resemblance to the historical Australia Cup trophy which ran from 1962 to 1968.[19] The cup itself is made from silver-solded brass, which is plated with 24 carat-gold and sterling silver.[20] It has two handles which each have the badge of Football Federation Australia inscribed on the inside corners. Also inscribed on the cup is the design of the cup and the words FFA Cup. The trophy features two footballs, one as the base of the cup and the other as a trim, on the very top of the cup lid.

The FFA Cup Trophy was created by D3 Design, who also designed the A-League, W-League and NPL Champions silverware.[20]

SponsorshipEdit

In its inaugural season the FFA Cup joined with an official naming rights partner. In 2014, Westfield Group was announced as the sponsor for the first three seasons of the cup tournament, known for commercial purposes as the "Westfield FFA Cup".[21]

Between 2014–2016 Umbro supplied match balls for all FFA Cup matches.[21] The FFA Cup Match Ball, the Umbro Neo 150 Elite, was specially designed for the competition.[22] Between 2017–2019 Mitre will supply the Mitre Delta Hyperseam as the official FFA Cup match ball after a public vote to select between three alternate ball designs.[23]

Media coverageEdit

In the tournament's first season, 10 matches were broadcast live on Fox Sports. One of which a Round of 32 match, two Round of 16 matches, and all matches from the quarter-finals onwards.[16] In addition, FFA Cup draws from the Round of 32 onwards were also televised live on Fox Sports.[21] In 2015 and 2016 Fox Sports streamed live all non-broadcast games via their online services.[24][25]

Internationally, at least 10 FFA Cup matches will be broadcast live in South Asian nations, such as: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, after a three season deal with TEN Sports in 2014.[26]

From 2017, 5 FFA Cup matches (from quarter finals) broadcast live by beIN Sports in Asia-Pacific nations, such as: Brunei, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand. 7 FFA Cup matches (from round of 16) broadcast live by BT Sport in UK and Republic of Ireland.

From 2018, at least 1 FFA Cup match per round (from Round of 32) will be broadcast live by ESPN+ in the United States [27] and in other countries where the rights are not sold, most of the matches are streamed live by YouTube via My Football channel.

Currently the ABC holds the Radio broadcast right for FFA Cup matches, including the Final, live via ABC Radio Grandstand.[28]

FinalsEdit

Season Champion Score Runner-up Venue Attendance
2014 Adelaide United 1–0 Perth Glory Coopers Stadium 16,142
2015 Melbourne Victory 2–0 Perth Glory AAMI Park 15,098
2016 Melbourne City 1–0 Sydney FC AAMI Park   18,751
2017 Sydney FC 2–1 (a.e.t.) Adelaide United Allianz Stadium 13,452
2018 Adelaide United 2–1 Sydney FC Coopers Stadium 14,448
2019 Adelaide United 4–0 Melbourne City Coopers Stadium 14,920
2020 Tournament cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia[12]

Individual HonoursEdit

Mark Viduka MedalEdit

The award given to the player of the match in each year's FFA Cup Final.

Year Player Club Reference
2014   Sergio Cirio Adelaide United [29]
2015   Kosta Barbarouses Melbourne Victory [30]
2016   Bruno Fornaroli Melbourne City [31]
2017   Adrian Mierzejewski Sydney FC [32]
2018   Craig Goodwin Adelaide United [33]
2019   Al Hassan Toure Adelaide United [34]
2020 not awarded

Michael Cockerill MedalEdit

Named after the late former journalist and broadcaster, the Michael Cockerill Medal recognizes the tournament's standout performer from a National Premier Leagues team.[35]

Year Player Club
2018   Elvis Kamsoba Avondale FC
2019   Fraser Hills Brisbane Strikers
2020 not awarded

Records and statisticsEdit

FinalEdit

TeamEdit

IndividualEdit

All roundsEdit

Round of 32 onwardsEdit

Preliminary roundsEdit

Individual recordsEdit

Round of 32 onwardsEdit

Preliminary roundsEdit

Winners and finalistsEdit

Results by teamEdit

Since its establishment, the FFA Cup has been won by 4 different teams.

Results by team
Club Wins First final won Last final won Runners-up Last final lost Total final
appearances
Adelaide United 3 2014 2019 1 2017 4
Sydney FC 1 2017 2017 2 2018 3
Melbourne City 1 2016 2016 1 2019 2
Melbourne Victory 1 2015 2015 0 1
Perth Glory 0 2 2015 2

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ D'Alfonso, Daniel (3 June 2011). "FFA Cup to embrace country teams". Herald Sun. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  2. ^ https://www.theffacup.com.au/news/ffa-cup-introduce-hyundai-a-league-play-process-2020
  3. ^ "FFA Cup a new old tradition". Football Federation Australia.
  4. ^ "Live Chat with Lyall Recap". Football Federation Australia. Archived from the original on 31 December 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  5. ^ Smithies, Tom (7 August 2012). "FFA Cup on hold due to cost concerns". Herald Sun. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  6. ^ "FFA Cup set for 2014 kick off". Football Federation Australia. Retrieved 2 September 2013.
  7. ^ "Football Federation Australia appoints FFA Cup General Manager". Football Federation Australia. 14 October 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  8. ^ Gorman, Joe (24 February 2014). "Will the FFA Cup help Australia's 'old soccer' clubs?". The Guardian. Retrieved 24 February 2014.
  9. ^ "Tuggeranong United gets nod for FFA Cup". The Canberra Times. 23 February 2014. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 2 April 2014.
  10. ^ a b c d Weiner, David (2013). "Football Federation Australia reveals new FFA Cup competition and trophy". Fox Sports. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  11. ^ "FFA wants cup-winner to earn spot in Asian Champions League, hopes to achieve goal by 2016". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 15 December 2014. Retrieved 15 December 2014.
  12. ^ a b "Coronavirus forces FFA Cup to be cancelled". The World Game. SBS. 7 July 2020. Retrieved 7 July 2020.
  13. ^ a b c d "FFA Cup How Draw Works". Football Federation Australia. Archived from the original on 6 March 2016.
  14. ^ "Cup spot the reward in PS4 NPL Finals Series". footballaustralia.com.au. 15 September 2014. Retrieved 22 September 2014.
  15. ^ "Competition Rules 2020 - Annexure 29 FFA Cup WA Preliminary Rounds" (PDF). Football West. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
  16. ^ a b c "2014 FFA Cup FAQs". Football Federation Australia. 24 February 2014. Archived from the original on 20 April 2014. Retrieved 24 February 2014.
  17. ^ "Saturday night final for Westfield FFA Cup in 2015". Football Federation Australia. 19 February 2015. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  18. ^ "FFA Cup to introduce Hyundai A-League play-off process from 2020". Hyundai A-League. Retrieved 20 December 2019.
  19. ^ Bossi, Dominic (24 February 2014). "FFA Cup: Minnows get a shot at A-League clubs". The Canberra Times. Retrieved 25 February 2014.
  20. ^ a b "EPL trophy influenced FFA Cup design". Football Federation Australia. 11 April 2014. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  21. ^ a b c "Westfield new naming rights partner of FFA Cup". Football Federation Australia. 12 May 2014. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  22. ^ "Umbro launch official Westfield FFA Cup ball". Football Federation Australia. 4 June 2014. Retrieved 4 June 2014.
  23. ^ "Vote on the new Mitre Westfield FFA Cup ball". Football Federation Australia. 27 January 2017. Retrieved 31 January 2017.
  24. ^ "Fox Sports to Live stream Westfield FFA Cup matches". Football Federation Australia. Retrieved 2 August 2015.
  25. ^ "FOX SPORTS to LIVE stream Westfield FFA Cup matches". Football Federation Australia. Retrieved 23 July 2016.
  26. ^ Greco, John (8 May 2014). "A-League and FFA Cup's Asia TV deal". Football Federation Australia. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  27. ^ [https;//www.espn.com/soccer/blog-espn-fc-united/story/3600047/espn+-viewers-guide-copa-americaserie-amajor-league-soccerfa-cupmore "ESPN"] Check |url= value (help).
  28. ^ http://www.footballaustralia.com.au/article/how-to-get-around-the-ffa-cup/7xkkt9t3rbml1pkytbnlnfboq
  29. ^ "Adelaide United's Sergio Cirio winner of the FFA Cup 'treble'". Fox Sports. Retrieved 18 December 2014.
  30. ^ Lynch, Michael (7 November 2015). "Melbourne Victory get better of Perth Glory to win FFA Cup". The Sydney Morning Herald.
  31. ^ "Fornaroli claims medal for FFA Cup show". SBS. 30 November 2016.
  32. ^ Kemp, Emma (21 November 2017). "Mierzejewski awarded Mark Viduka Medal". ESPN FC.
  33. ^ Gatt, Ray (30 October 2018). "FFA Cup final: Craig Goodwin strikes gold for Reds". The Australian.
  34. ^ "Dream comes true for Al Hassan Toure as Adelaide lift FFA Cup again". The Guardian. 23 October 2019.
  35. ^ "Avondale ace Kamsoba claims Fox Sports' new FFA Cup honour". Football Federation Australia. 20 October 2018. Retrieved 20 October 2018.
  36. ^ "FFA Cup Match Center – Teviot Downs SC 0–31 Bayside United FC". sportstg.com. 2 March 2019. Retrieved 4 March 2019.
  37. ^ "FFA Cup Match Center – Albion Park White Eagles 31–0 Epping FC". sportstg.com. 14 March 2019. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  38. ^ Stavroulakis, Mark (23 March 2020). "FFA CUP ROUND 2 – REPORTS UPDATED". Football New South Wales. Retrieved 25 March 2020.

External linksEdit