In November 2004, shopping centre billionaire Frank Lowy walked into a packed media conference and announced the creation of a new professional football league. Armed with $15 million of government funds, Lowy was about to wake the sleeping giant of Australian sport. The A-League kicked off in 2005.
Over the competition’s first decade it has seen more than its fair share of drama, on and off the field. International superstars have come to play, eccentric billionaires have bought and sold franchises, and clubs have folded after haemorrhaging millions of dollars. Yet the football has been passionate and captivating, and attendances and television audiences have grown as Australians have embraced the game as never before.
Relying on unprecedented access to key figures in the code, John Stensholt and Shaun Mooney reveal the true story behind the A-League’s first ten years: the egos, the power plays and the rows between some of Australia’s richest men as they try to make the world game Australia’s favourite sport.
‘Money, power, ego and ambition. Throw in the odd football match and you have the story of the A-League — from forgotten game to unforgettable glory.’—Francis Leach, ABC
‘Once I started, I couldn’t put it down. A wonderful and riveting insight into the first decade of the A-League.’—Ray Gatt, The Australian
‘There’s enough in this for a 20-year period, such has been the last decade in Australian club football. Entertaining, informative, this covers it all — the good, the bad, the ugly.’—Adam Peacock, Fox Sports