The Hyundai A-League 2016/17 season will kick off with a blockbuster opening fortnight featuring Sydney and Melbourne derbies and a Grand Final rematch, Football Federation Australia (FFA) has announced today.
The first ever Sydney Derby at ANZ Stadium will be the marquee match of the opening round with a Melbourne Derby scheduled for Round Two, which also sees the Western Sydney Wanderers return to South Australia to face the Hyundai A-League 2016 champions Adelaide United.
The Hyundai A-League 2016/17 Season will kick-off on Friday 7 October when Brisbane Roar FC host Melbourne Victory at Suncorp Stadium. The Hyundai A-League 2017 Finals Series will begin on the weekend of 21-23 April and the Hyundai A-League 2017 Grand Final is scheduled for Sunday 7 May 2017.
Speaking today, FFA CEO David Gallop said the draw was full of promise for another exciting season, the 12th edition of the Hyundai A-League.
“The season starts with a bang in October and we will once again see the great unscripted drama unfold with another crescendo as we build towards the finals series” said Gallop.
“The Summer of Football concept with 10 matches in 11 days over the Christmas / New Year period is always very popular and we are expecting bumper crowds during this period.
“There's also a split round to accommodate the challenges of the AFC Champions League to give our clubs the best chance possible in the group stage.
In addition, following last week’s announcement by FIFA that the Hyundai A-League will be amongst the first competitions world-wide to trial the use of Video Assistant Referees (VARs), Gallop also announced that, subject to the successful “offline” trials, “live” use of VARs will be implemented for the Hyundai A-League 2017 Finals Series.
“All in all, I'm delighted we have a draw that will be welcomed by the clubs, players and fans.” concluded Gallop.
Key features of the Hyundai A-League 2016/17 Season draw
- Opening Round of the Hyundai A-League 2016/17 Season begins on Friday 7 October 2016 with the Brisbane Roar FC hosting Melbourne Victory @ Suncorp Stadium
· Hyundai A-League 2017 Finals Series will begin on the weekend of 21-23 April 2017 and may feature “live” Video Assistant Referees (VARs).
· Hyundai A-League 2017 Grand Final will be played on Sunday 7 May 2017.
- Grand Final Re-Match (Adelaide United v Western Sydney Wanderers FC): Round 2 (Friday, 14 October 2016 @ Coopers Stadium)
- Derby Days
- Sydney Derbies (Sydney FC v Western Sydney Wanderers FC): Rounds 1 (8 October @ ANZ Stadium), 15 (14 January @ Allianz Stadium) and 20 (18 February @ ANZ Stadium).
- Melbourne Derbies (Melbourne City FC v Melbourne Victory): Rounds 2 (15 October @ Etihad Stadium), 11 (17 December @ AAMI Park) and 18 (4 February @ Etihad Stadium).
- F3 Derbies (Central Coast Mariners v Newcastle Jets): Round 7 (Sunday 20 November @ Hunter Stadium), Round 21 (Saturday 25 February @ Hunter Stadium ) Round 26 (Sunday 9 April @ Central Coast Stadium)
- Distance Derbies (Perth Glory v Wellington Phoenix): Round 2 (Sunday 16 October @ nib Stadium), Round 14 (Thursday 5 January @ nib Stadium), Round 22 (Saturday 4 March @ QBE Stadium (Auckland)
- Adelaide United vs Melbourne Victory @ Rounds 3 (Saturday 22 October @ Coopers Stadium), 14 (7 January @ Coopers Stadium) and 21 (Saturday 25 February @ AAMI Park).
- Summer of Football’ with 10 matches in 11 days (i.e. Rounds 12 and 13) which includes two matches on Boxing Day (Newcastle Jets v Wellington Phoenix @ Hunter Stadium & Adelaide United v Sydney FC @ Coopers Stadium), one match on New Year’s Eve (Central Coast Mariners v Melbourne City FC @ Central Coast Stadium) and one match on New Year’s Day (Western Sydney Wanderers FC v Perth Glory @ANZ Stadium)
- Themed Rounds
- Remembrance Round – Round 6
- Play Football Round – Round 18
- Round 23 will be a “Split Round” in order to accommodate back to back AFC Champions League Match Days 2 and 3 with matches scheduled as follows:
- Week 1 – Friday 10 and Saturday 11 March 2017 (2 Matches) - No Clubs participating in the AFC Champions League;
- Week 2 – Friday 17 March, Saturday 18 March and Sunday 19 March 2017 (3 matches) – including Adelaide United, Western Sydney Wanderers FC and Brisbane Roar FC)
- The following fixtures at alternate home venues have been incorporated:
- Round 6: Saturday, 12 November 2016 Central Coast Mariners v Wellington Phoenix @ GIO Stadium, Canberra, ACT
- Round 10: Saturday, 10 December 2016 - Wellington Phoenix v Central Coast Mariners @ FMG Stadium, Hamilton, NZ
- Round 11: Saturday, 17 December 2016 - Wellington Phoenix v Western Sydney Wanderers FC @ Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland, NZ
- Round 13: Monday, 2 January 2017 - Melbourne Victory v Newcastle Jets @ Simonds Stadium, Geelong, VIC
- Round 16: Sunday, 22 January 2017 - Western Sydney Wanderers FC v Newcastle Jets @ Campbelltown Stadium, Campbelltown, NSW
- Round 17: Friday, 27 January 2017 - Newcastle Jets v Melbourne City FC @ C.ex Coffs International Stadium, Coffs Harbour, NSW
- Round 18: Saturday, 4 February 2017 - Wellington Phoenix v Western Sydney Wanderers FC @ Yarrows Stadium, New Plymouth, NZ
- Round 18: Sunday, 5 February 2017 - Central Coast Mariners v Adelaide United @ GIO Stadium, Canberra, ACT
- Round 22: Saturday, 4 March 2017 - Wellington Phoenix v Perth Glory @ QBE Stadium, Auckland, NZ
· Fox Sports will show all matches of the Hyundai A-League 2016/17 Season and Hyundai A-League 2017 Finals Series exclusively live.
· SBS TV will broadcast Friday night matches live and the Hyundai A-League 2017 Finals Series on a one-hour delay.
· ABC Grandstand will broadcast all matches of the Hyundai A-League 2016/17 Season and Hyundai A-League 2017 Finals Series on local radio or digitally via the Grandstand app or website.
· Croc Media will broadcast Friday night matches live and also all matches during the Hyundai A-League 2017 Finals Series.
For all membership, ticketing, news and match information including exclusive behind-the-scenes content on the Hyundai A-League visit www.a-league.com.au