Melbourne’s AAMI Stadium has started the 2010/2011 A-League Season in fine style receiving outstanding ratings by the PFA Pitch Rating System.
At round 3, AAMI Stadium is comfortably rating as the A-League’s best pitch receiving an overall mark of 4.7. AAMI Stadium is also rating the highest in the other 3 categories receiving a hardness mark of 4.3, a pace mark of 4.7 and a smoothness mark of 4.7.

AAMI Stadium is home to both Melbourne Heart and Melbourne Victory and has held a game each round to date: the A-League opener between the Heart and Central Coast Mariners, the round 2 match between the Victory and Perth Glory and last week’s round 3 match between the Victory and North Queensland Fury.
Now in its second season, the PFA Pitch Rating System is designed to ensure first class football pitches and a safe working environment for A-League players. The System provides constant input from the players themselves on whether the playing surfaces are up to the standard expected for top-tier professional football.  At the conclusion of each A-League match, the visiting captain rates the pitch by assigning a mark out of 5 on 4 criteria: (1) overall; (2) hardness; (3) pace; and (4) smoothness. The higher the mark, the better the rating.
In the System’s inaugural season, Brisbane Roar’s Suncorp Stadium set the benchmark for A-League pitches finishing in first place with an average of 4.3 out of 5.  On the other end of the scale, Newcastle Jets’ Energy Stadium rated the poorest receiving an average of 2.5 out of 5. In short, the results from the 2009/2010 A-League Season illustrated that while some clubs were meeting the standard required for top-tier professional football, others needed to be improved in order to ensure player health and safety.
In order to continue the growth and success of the A-League, it is crucial to ensure first class pitches so that players can perform at their best providing better spectacles for fans and to protect the health and safety of the A-League’s biggest asset – the players. Clubs and competition organisers have a responsibility to ensure the wellbeing of players by providing a work environment which is free from unreasonable risk to their health and safety. The System brings accountability to this area which is of fundamental importance to players and the game itself.