Australia’s football federation stands down 70 per cent staff

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Melbourne: Australian football federation has decided to lay off 70 per cent of its staff due to the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This has been an extremely difficult decision to make, but necessary to stabilize the organisation so that it can continue to service the game, albeit in a vastly different landscape,” Football Federation Australia (FFA) Chief Executive James Johnson said in a statement on Friday.

“Industries all over the world have been severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and football in Australia is no different,” he added.

The entire world has come to a standstill amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. Sports activities have also taken a big hit and almost all the events have been postponed or cancelled, including the Olympics.

International matches for Australia’s national teams have also been suspended indefinitely, along with all grass-roots and community soccer.

“We are in a situation where grassroots football and the Hyundai A-League are currently suspended, we’ve had the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the deferral of the international football calendar, so virtually all football activity has now ceased for the foreseeable future because of COVID-19,” said Johnson.

“These developments impact many forms of revenue for FFA, including national registration fees, broadcast fees, sponsorship, ticket sales and government funding, so we have needed to adjust our operations to ensure that we can remain operational, forcing us to take the unfortunate decision to stand down approximately 70 per cent of our workforce,” he added.

Almost 3,000 confirmed coronavirus cases have been reported in Australia and many lives have been lost. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has also announced a mandatory 14-day quarantine for all arrivals into the country from midnight on Saturday.

(Agencies)