FANS GET FIRST CHANCE TO SEE NEW CLUBS IN ACTION

FANS GET FIRST CHANCE TO SEE NEW CLUBS IN ACTION
17 February 2005 FFA

Australian sports fans will get their first chance to see the clubs from the Hyundai A-League play each other when the Australian Club World Championship Qualifying Tournament is held in May.

Details of the fixtures and venues were today confirmed by Football Federation Australia with the competition to run over eight days from 7 May - 14 May.

Express Advocate Stadium in Gosford will host a double header with Sydney FC playing the Queensland Roar followed by Central Coast Mariners up against Newcastle United Jets.

Later that evening Adelaide United will host Melbourne Victory at Hindmarsh Stadium, the same venue where the final of the tournament will be played on 14 May.

Perth Glory, the remaining Australian club in the Hyundai A-League, will host one of two semi-finals on Wednesday 11 May. The other semi-final on the same night will be held in Gosford.

FFA Head of Operations Matt Carroll said the tournament was an exciting way of deciding which club would represent Australia in Tahiti at the Oceania qualifiers.

"This tournament gives fans a sneak preview of the clubs in action against each other before the first season gets underway later in the year," said Mr Carroll.

"We expect all clubs to be giving everything they have to win this tournament as there is the opportunity to win US $1 million, as well as play against some of the world's greatest clubs.

"We decided to spread the tournament across a few venues to allow a range of fans to see matches."

"The double-header at Gosford to open the tournament gives fans from Newcastle, Central Coast and Sydney the chance to see their teams in action."

"Perth were seeded straight through to the semi finals due to their win in the NSL Grand Final."

Carroll said it was practical for Hindmarsh Stadium to be the venue for the final.

"It wasn't practical to have seven venues on hold and only being able to give them a few days notice on whether they would host a final or not," said Mr Carroll.

"Hindmarsh is a quality football stadium and some of the other venues will be quite busy around that time."

"Fans in South Australia showed tremendous support for the game last year with their attendance at Adelaide United matches so it's fitting they are rewarded with the chance to see the final of this tournament."

The winner of the Australia World Club Championship Qualifying Tournament will head to Tahiti to play in the Oceania Football Confederation Club World Championship Qualifying Tournament from 30 May - 10 June. The winner of that tournament will represent Oceania at the FIFA Club World Championship to be held in Tokyo, Japan from 11 December - 18 December.





MATCH SCHEDULE



ROUND 1



Saturday 7 May 2005

Match 1 - Sydney FC v Queensland Roar, 5.00pm - Express Advocate Stadium

Match 2 - Central Coast Mariners v Newcastle United Jets, 7.30pm - Express Advocate Stadium

Match 3 - Adelaide United v Melbourne Victory, 7.30pm - Hindmarsh Stadium



SEMI FINALS



Wednesday 11 May 2005

Semi Final 1 - Perth Glory v Winner Match 1, 7.30pm - Members Equity Stadium

Semi Final 2 - Winner Match 2 v Winner Match 3, 7.30pm - Express Advocate Stadium



FINAL



Saturday 14 May 2005

Final - Winner Semi Final 1 v Winner Semi Final 2, 7.30pm - Hindmarsh Stadium



* All kick off times local.



Winner qualifies for Oceania Football Confederation Club World Championship Qualifying Tournament, Tahiti, 30 May - 10 June 2005. Winner of that tournament qualifies for FIFA Club World Championship, Japan 11 December - 18 December 2005.


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