AAFC pushing for second division to be added to FIFA-FFA discussions
A-League expansion may be officially on the way but the lobby group pushing for a national second division is intent on making sure their ambitions stay firmly on FIFA's radar.
Hostilities will resume in Australian football's ongoing civil war this week with a series of meetings that should signify the start of the end of the sport's long-running governance deadlock.
Two FIFA officials -- Nodar Akhalkatsi and Luca Nicola -- and the Asian Football Confederation's Ravi Kumar have jetted into Sydney for three days of talks at Football Federation Australia (FFA) headquarters.
Their purpose is to help set up a "congress review working group," which will be tasked with widening FFA's congress.
The governing body's last attempt at doing so was voted down at November's annual general meeting.
Instead of making good on their threats to replace FFA chairman Steven Lowy and his board with a "normalisation committee," FIFA decided to make one more visit to try and force a diplomatic solution.
On Tuesday, the FIFA and AFC delegates will meet with the "special interest groups" seeking a seat in an expanded congress.
They include referees, coaches, women's football and supporters, as well as the Association of Australian Football Clubs (AAFC), which released a blueprint for a national second tier drawn from state-league clubs last year.
AAFC chairman Rabieh Krayem said he spoke with FFA as recently as Wednesday about their model, dubbed The Championship, which it hopes will be up and running by October 2019 and eventually introduce a promotion and relegation system.
But Krayem said he was "surprised" there was no mention of it in FFA's announcement about expansion and would make a point of keeping FIFA and AFC in the loop.
"There's no doubt expansion and a second division come hand in hand," Krayem told AAP.
"The work we're doing at the moment will ensure it stays a priority."
FIFA and AFC will be joined by high-ranking FFA official Mark Falvo for separate meetings across Tuesday and Wednesday with the PFA, state federations, A-League clubs and FFA board, before a joint summit on Thursday.
It's understood the clubs aren't happy about Falvo's presence in those meetings.
FFA chief executive David Gallop warned there would almost certainly be no resolution struck this week.
"This visit is more about establishing a process ... to really look at what everyone recognises as the way forward, which is a bigger congress," Gallop told 2GB Radio.
"It won't be overnight in moving to that."