A government-brokered deal fixing a formula for compensation was struck at the eleventh hour this week, allowing Australia to hand its bid book to FIFA by the deadline on Friday with a semblance of cooperation [nSGE6490I1].
However, the Memorandum of Understanding merely papers over the cracks, and allows the rival codes to schedule matches in direct competition with the tournament, opening up the embarrassing possibility of half-empty stadiums as local fans vote with their feet.
"Not negotiable for us, if you wanted to articulate it as a deal-breaker, was that we had to have the ability for our season to play through," Gillon McLachlan, chief operating officer of the Australian Football League (AFL), told Reuters.
Australia W.Cup bid papers over home game cracks
May 14, 2010