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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Mar, 12, 2007

New Zealand could lose A-League license

SYDNEY, March 12 (Reuters) - New Zealand are in danger of losing their place in next season's A-League competition to an Australian soccer team because of funding problems.

The Football Federation of Australia (FFA), which runs the fledgling tournament, has given a Wellington consortium until Wednesday to come up with A$2 million (£807,246) or be replaced by a new Australian club.

New Zealand Soccer officials have proposed that Wellington replace the Auckland-based Knights whose licence was revoked because of insolvency issues.

But the FFA head of operations Matt Carroll said New Zealand Soccer had missed a deadline to show how they would finance the club and were in danger of losing their licence to an Australian outfit if they could not come up with the money by Wednesday.

'We've upped the ante with New Zealand today - they've been very slow in coming forward with the financials to show us how they can actually fund the club,' Carroll told reporters in Sydney on Monday.

'As much as Wellington is a great city and they've got a great coach and infrastructure, without the necessary funding it would be very hard to run an A-League club.'

The remaining seven clubs in the A-League are all based in Australia. The competition was set up two years ago as part of a major overhaul of the way soccer is run in Australia.

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