Fitting finale to sensational season

What a Grand Final we saw at Suncorp Stadium yesterday! Full of great football, drama and incredible noise and colour.

What a Grand Final we saw at Suncorp Stadium yesterday! Full of great football, drama and incredible noise and colour.

It's fair to say that the Hyundai A-League is setting the gold standard in Australian sport when it comes to generating atmosphere and having fans so much a part of the matchday.

Congratulations to Brisbane Roar, worthy champions of Australia who will deservedly celebrate for a few days to come. A championship lasts forever and makes history for a club and its people.

Commiserations to Western Sydney Wanderers, whose emotions will be raw this morning after coming so close yet again.

Given time, I hope all associated with the club will have a sense of accomplishment from Season 9, particularly with a place in the Asian Champions League along with Brisbane Roar.

I'm sure all Australian football fans will be cheering Western Sydney in the first leg of their Round of 16 ACL clash in Japan this week.

Whether you were watching on TV, following the action on digital channels or were lucky enough to be in the stadium, you are part of a vibrant football community that has made the Hyundai A-League the home for our football fascination.

The week in, week out tempo of club football sets the heartbeat for a football nation. I'm so proud that the A-League is entrenched in the sporting landscape and is connected with so many Australians.

Season 9 has seen continued growth for the A-League. Crowds up 6%, TV audiences up 17%, membership up 33% and digital audiences up 30%.

An aggregate 1.8 million passed through our turnstiles. More Australians than ever before have lived and breathed A-League action.

Football never sleeps in Australia. The Matildas are getting ready for this month's AFC Asian Women's Cup and the Socceroos squad will be named in a few weeks are start preparations for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

Voting for the FOXTEL A-League All Stars closed last night and the preliminary 32-man squad will be named soon. We can't wait until the A-League's best, led by captain Alessandro del Piero, take on Juventus in August.

The FFA Cup is alive and kicking through the qualification competitions in state and territory member federations, counting down the to Round of 32 in July.

Soon enough we'll be thinking of Season 10 of the Hyundai A-League. For now, let's remember a great Grand Final. I thank everyone who made this season so remarkable; players, coaches, staff, referees, volunteers and especially you - the fans.