In a response to the feedback and criticism of their proposed second division model, the Association of Australian Football Clubs (AAFC) have released additional criteria for hopeful clubs.
The first round included requirements for teams to have a minimum 3000 capacity stadium, a budget of $2.5m, half the squad to be 25 or under and a maximum of two visa players from Asia or Oceania.
For the next stage, the restrictions are a bit tighter and should help streamline the entry requirements for the applicants.
“Obviously we have over 90 clubs in the AAFC and they won’t all be able to participate in our inaugural season, this way we can get rid of some of the hangers on,” a spokesperson said.
The key feature for any new clubs is to be able to provide a Michelin starred restaurant with a known head chef either in or adjacent to their stadium.
Citing the success of the Bentleigh Greens souvlaki and some of the other cuisines offered during the FFA Cup, they are looking to capitalise on the food craze and bring in some new fans who can join the game through their stomachs.
Stadiums are in fact a big focus in this new release with all pitches, somewhat bizarrely, needing to be laid out in an East-West orientation.
This operates counter to traditional sporting norms as grounds are traditionally North-South to prevent one side having to run into the setting sun.
To help with the traction, all clubs participating in The Championship must nominate a Number 1 Ticket Holder that will act as a de facto marketing arm through social media posts.
But in a bizarre clause to this, the fan must have appeared in an Australian reality television show to keep the local flavour about the league.
Clubs are already looking to contact recent winners of The Block Josh & Elyse to capitalise on their moment in the spotlight with Bachelorette runner up Jarrod also receiving plenty of interest.
The hottest commodities in terms of fan endorsement are expected to come from the next season of I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here.
One of the big criticisms about the first release of information was the desire to claim a spot in the Asian Champions League for the winner each season.
The AAFC have opted to double down on this deciding to also opt for a spot in European club competitions.
“Look if we can participate in Eurovision and place there I don’t see why we can’t get to the group stage and play against Real Madrid and Barcelona, if we have to go Europa League I suppose we can settle for that,” the spokesperson said.
While not everyone has fully embraced the plan, those who have supported it have been strongly in favour of it.
“I think it’s great for some of these clubs to have a chance on the national stage, we can meet any requirements, even our own broadcast deal,” said Josh Smith, 42 from South Melbourne who claims to have been involved with the game for almost 70 years.
With play not slated to start until 2019, more conditions are expected to be announced in the future as participating teams prepare for their entry.