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FFA shouldn't intervene on Cahill: Griffin


Adelaide United chairman Greg Griffin has warned Football Federation Australia against loosening the A-League salary cap to accommodate Tim Cahill, while Ernie Merrick reckons it should be scrapped altogether.

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As the wait continues for official confirmation of Cahill’s high-profile move to Melbourne City, Griffin has revealed his reticence towards the deal, saying FFA shouldn’t be bending the rules or contributing any money to A-League signings.

“My personal view is if you don’t fit in, you don’t fit in,” Griffin told reporters.

“I don’t think FFA should be determinants of which so-called marquee players come into the competition, and I don’t think they should be contributing, unless there was an extraordinary event.

“Probably, Tim Cahill is an extraordinary event – I just don’t like the fact that salary cap tends to become diminished in this process.

“I think the fairer the playing field, the better the competition.”

FFA specifically created the full-season guest player position – essentially a third marquee slot – in the off-season so City could sign Cahill, a wildly popular figure who will boost their poor home crowd numbers.

But City will receive financial assistance from FFA because the Socceroo great will also take on a marketing and promotional role for the A-League itself.

Griffin described Cahill as a “gift” for the rich City Football Group but said Adelaide, the reigning A-League champions, would continue to live within their means.

“Businesses fail because people spend more than they have. We’re one of the two profitable clubs in the A-League, and we’re very proud of that,” he said.

Wellington Phoenix coach Merrick, meanwhile, is at the other end of the spectrum.

Merrick says he can’t figure out why FFA are still bothering with the salary cap – particularly now clubs can do so much outside of it.

“I think we’ve grown up. It’s been 10 years now, let’s just get on with it,” Merrick told Fairfax Media.

“I don’t know if it is a salary cap anymore … there are all these special, little loyalty bonuses and first-year player bonuses. There are that many I have lost track.

“Why not let people invest big? It just makes the league grow rapidly. That’s what’s happening in the MLS.”


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