Australia's much-anticipated FFA Cup national knockout soccer competition has been given the green light for a 2014 kick-off, pending TV rights and sponsorship deals.
Football Federation Australia (FFA) chief executive David Gallop said on Thursday the board had granted its in-principle approval for the inaugural FFA Cup at its meeting last Friday.
The tournament, based on England's FA Cup, is set to feature hundreds of amateur and semi-professional clubs - including the National Premier Leagues.
A-League sides will enter the draw at a later stage, most likely September and October, ahead of the inaugural Cup final in December.
"The idea of the FFA Cup has captured the imagination of the football community and there's a huge groundswell of support," Gallop said in a statement.
"Everyone in the game is keen for this concept to come to life, but the prudent way forward is to ensure the right commercial and organisational foundations are in place."
Gallop said FFA management now had a mandate to conclude talks with broadcasters and sponsors to finalise commercial arrangements.