The current Futsal structure in NSW appears to be unsustainable, lacking in imagination and marketing.
It is sad to see clubs such as Quake playing out of Windsor and Sydney City Eagles playing out of Penrith, both clubs are foundation clubs that have been moved from their supporter base by a rule that has been a resounding failure.
Volunteers, players, referees and supporters doing a 128 km round trip to Windsor every second week wears very thin very quickly and we risk losing these people to the game.
I do applaud the sentiment and concept behind it but we have tried it and it hasn’t worked.
In order to market our sport we need the opportunity to promote it to the broader community, currently we preach to the converted. We all know how entertaining our game is, it is others who need to be exposed to it.
What is needed is a bold change to what is current thinking and this needs to happen now in order to plan for the 2013-2014 season.
I believe we should go to 3 divisions of eight with a one up one down policy, the third division should they only have six clubs then those six clubs will battle to come up to the second division. I believe we will generate more clubs rather than less.
The first two divisions must contain no more and no less than eight teams.
Any new clubs that which to participate must come in via the third division.
All Division One ( Premier/ Elite 1) Mens teams compete either on a Friday night or Sunday (day or night) with four teams at one 40 x 20 international venue and the remaining four teams at the other venue. This will increase marketing opportunities for the sport, for example James Brackenridge may film the events and post them to TVS in the first instance and potentially SBS or Fox.
Some Sundays all eight Premier Mens teams may play at one venue aka F league concept.
This concept will free up Premier Mens players to coach their club teams on a Saturday.
All club teams will remain at their home court irrespective of court size, facilities of course should meet a certain criteria.
All academy teams should be encouraged to play on a smaller court i.e. basketball to encourage playing in a smaller space and getting more touches on the ball in line with FFA criteria.
Finally I believe the council of clubs should be re invigorated in order to get these ideas and concepts passed through Football NSW who indeed welcome ideas and changes.
At the end of the day Futsal people need to guide Futsal into a place where we all know it should be.
It is now time to be thinking outside of the square, let us all be part of a sustainable future.
Comments and thoughts are welcomed.