Dear Football & Futsal family,
2021 has again tested our resilience; both as Victorians; and as collective custodians of football.
We all feel football’s absence in our daily lives - and it hurts. We miss the laughter and the tears; the welcoming faces at the gate; the Club’s speciality at the canteen; the intense focus and come-from-behind wins.
As challenging as the recent months have been, it is important to reflect on some of the significant highs 2021 provided for football in our state.
Victoria celebrated the Victorian Government’s $101.1m investment, following the Federal Government’s initial $15m, into the Home of the Matildas at Latrobe University. This will build not only a home for our much loved national teams, but a true hub for Victorian football, particularly the women’s game. Exciting times are ahead of us, as the facility springs to life before the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
In addition, the state government poured over $47m of funding into significant football infrastructure, while countless grants and projects were funded by local government. We simply do not have enough facilities to keep up with demand for our game but this welcome investment will go a long way to providing opportunities for more Victorians to join our football family. We express our sincere gratitude to the Victorian Government and Councils for their ongoing support.
We were thrilled to see participation numbers thrive, following the abandoned season in 2020. We also proudly renewed our commitment to Futsal; granted the rights to host the 2023 National Futsal Championships and now formally recognised by the Victorian Government as the State Sporting Association for Futsal in Victoria.
We cannot help but reflect on where our game could have been, if not for the back-to-back season interruptions in 2020 and 2021. While the 2021 season cancellations across the state didn’t come as a surprise to many, we know it doesn’t make it any easier to accept, including what this means for promotion, relegation and awarding champions.
In advance of the 2022 season, the Board is committed to ensuring the Rules of Competition reflect a clear set of principles in the event of any future interrupted or incomplete seasons.
Many Clubs have reinforced a strong desire to play football in any format, when it is safe to do so. The call of the pitch is strong and we will be working with Clubs to provide football in all ways, at venues across the state in spring and summer. We look forward to sharing more information on this shortly when we have direction from the Victorian Government.
While we are actively working towards the 2022 season, we must address the legacy that the 2021 cancellation leaves.
Importantly, we can today confirm our FV 2021 Fee Refund Policy for the partial 2021 season.
Most of our community will recall from both the 2020 and preliminary 2021 policies, that a cost apportionment model is used to generate the relevant refunds for each competition. It is really important to note that FV’s costs are not linear to the season, with an overwhelming proportion of the work to provide football competitions completed prior to the season’s commencement. This is reflected in the preliminary version of the 2021 Fee Refund Policy released pre-season, which contained relevant refunds for a ‘no-season scenario’.
Based on this cost apportionment model only, no refunds would be payable at this stage of the season. However, FV is acutely aware of the financial impacts to the football ecosystem and its stakeholders. Through this updated policy, we have made a strong commitment to supporting our Clubs and players, at a time when they need it most.
As a result, we have developed a formula, as below, to deliver funds back to both Clubs and players, to support your football journey and a return to football in 2022. We have applied cost apportionment principles, as represented through the ‘no season’ refund percentages, as well as the percentage of rounds unable to be completed for each competition.
This represents a return of over $1.75 million back into the Victorian football economy, to directly support Clubs and players.
To see the relevant refund amount for your competition, please see Section 2.0 of the policy.
For players, the refund from FV’s component of the fees will be returned to you via your Club. FV will finalise reconciliations with Clubs by September 30 and requires Clubs to return funds to players by November 30, unless a different arrangement is requested by the player of their Club (for example, roll-over of the credit to offset 2022 Club fees).
Please note that FV’s refund policy only relates to the FV portion of fees. A further Club/Association-specific policy may apply in relation to the balance of fees paid directly to Clubs and Associations.
For any enquiries related to this policy, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have an incredible army of football people, dedicated to growing the game, both within Clubs & Associations and at Football Victoria. FV is committed to supporting the football community and working together to grow our beautiful game. Like you, we are hoping that the Government’s COVID-19 roadmap will pave the way for fewer impacts on football - and that the worst of this pandemic will soon be behind us.
We want to sincerely thank each and every one of you for your contribution to Victorian football in 2021. Once this challenge has passed, we look forward to where we can take our game, together.
Sincerely yours in football,
Football Victoria President
Football Victoria CEO