Demons in favour of nine game season
Perth Football Club President Bob Shields says the club is supportive of a shortened nine game season, as debate intensifies surrounding the viability of WAFL football in 2020.
The season is on hold until at least June 1st due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with fears of no WAFL football being possible due to the virus and the risks associated.
Shields told Sports Drive on Tuesday his club wanted a shortened season rather than a mothballed 2020 campaign.
“We would like to play football,” Shields said.
“That’s what we are in the business of and the club always has been,”
“I personally would like to see a nine game season, we must play each club once to have legitimacy I believe.”
Shields said the club was open to a season that finished beyond the month of September, even pushing in to October and November should it be required.
“The health of the players, supporters, staff and our opposition is paramount. I don’t really mind how late it is in the year, I think if it is at all possible we should play football.” He said.
The WA Football Hall of Famer and Perth premiership player said other WAFL clubs had mixed views on playing a nine round season.
“If we do play nine games, it will cost us more to play football than not. Some football clubs will be impacted by that more keenly than others. It increases our budget deficit with costs on match day. We still want to play football however.”
In sustainability measures put in place by the WA Football Comission in recent days, the WAFC will cut funding to clubs by 50% from June 1st this year, leaving several clubs in a financial loophole.
Shields said he held fears for the future of a ten team competition.
“I think it’s almost inevitable that the competition will change. Don’t ask me yet how that will happen, but I think it will,” he said.
“Perhaps something that might have taken several years to happen might be bought forward as a result of this crisis.”
In other news the club has been given the green light to begin the redevelopment of the members’ grandstand of Lathlain Park, the East Victoria Park Council signing off on the project last week.
IMAGE: Perth FC Facebook.