The season starts on 27. December with the latest derby in the league: Western Sydney Wanderers v Macarthur FC at Bankwest Stadium, while Sydney FC and Melbourne City face a grand final three days later at ANZ Stadium.
However, some games scheduled later in the year have not confirmed venues due to the challenges associated with using the SCG, Marvel Stadium and GMHBA Stadium due to the AFL season.
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Western United is particularly hard hit as there are eight home games without a venue. The club’s desire to host a few games at AAMI Park has drawn the ire of Melbourne Victory and Melbourne City.
Those in charge of the A-League remain confident that they will find a solution to the venue problems before the start of the season.
Wellington Phoenix, the team hardest hit by COVID travel restrictions, will keep their headquarters in NSW and play their 13 home games at WIN Stadium in Wollongong.
« We look forward to bringing the Wollongong people here a show for our home games and being part of the community, » said David Dome, Phoenix General Manager.
« Our players are very keen to come out and meet the fans and we want the Wollongong audience to really get to know us and what we are about. « . ”
Depending on the formation of a travel bubble between Australia and New Zealand next year, up to three of Phoenix’s home games could switch to real home games in Wellington.
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The draw also confirmed Brisbane Roar’s departure from Suncorp Stadium – the club’s home stadium since the A-League was founded in 2005 – for the boutique Dolphin Stadium in Redcliffe. The Roar are now just Brisbane, with their training base on the Gold Coast and their new home in the Moreton Bay region.
All clubs except Perth Glory will play games in the first week of the season, which consists of eight games.
The Glory, currently serving the AFC Champions League in Qatar, has called for the start of the A League campaign to be delayed because they were unable to train during a two-week quarantine period on their return to Perth.
The Glory’s first game of the season won’t be released until Jan.. January against Adelaide United at HBF Park in Perth.
The Victory and Sydney, both also in Qatar, are allowed to train during the 14-day quarantine period.
A-League officials have no plans for hubs and are confident that any border restrictions will be relaxed so the season schedule can go as planned. However, there are contingency plans as well.
Greg O’Rourke, Head of the FFA League, said: “This was one of the most challenging games we have ever played as the restrictions kept evolving. However, our priority has always been to deliver the best football to the fans in the safest possible way working with all of our stakeholders to do so. ”
Players are allowed to go to cafes, restaurants and bars during the season, provided the venue complies with COVID-safe protocols.
The opening game of the season will be part of a double headed ball that also includes the W-League season opener between the Wanderers and Melbourne Victory.
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A-League, Western Sydney Wanderers FC, Central Coast Mariners FC, Melbourne City FC, Brisbane Roar FC, Melbourne Victory FC, W-League, 2021, Perth Glory FC, Adelaide United Football Club
EbeneMagazine – AU – A-League 2020-21 games with venue chaos causing headaches