Football Coaches Association (FCA) and Professional Footballers Australia (PFA) are committed to working with a “unity of purpose” for the benefit of the game after agreeing to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

Sharing a commitment to pursue the highest standards of professionalism in Australian football, the MOU commits the FCA and PFA to maintain a close working relationship between players and licensed coaches.

Through the MOU, PFA and FCA will cooperate on a range of issues impacting upon Australia football including:

  • collaborating on professional development opportunities for elite players and coaches at all levels of the game from grassroots to professional competitions;
  • seeking solutions to challenges and barriers to football through collaboration and consultation;
  • working with stakeholders to protect children and youth footballers within an elite sporting environment;
  • ensuring that elite training environments across the country provide a positive experience and give due regard to the holistic development of coaches of players.

PFA President Alex Wilkinson said the partnership would align two stakeholders within the sport who provide significant intellectual property and whose livelihoods are invested in the well-being of the sport.

“Coaches at all levels of the game play a critical role in the lives and careers of footballers whilst footballers help coaches achieve their goals and aspirations, so there is such a strong connection between the two groups,” said Wilkinson.

“The PFA and FCA have a shared commitment to building the best possible careers in football and helping drive the international competitiveness of our respective members. It’s this unity of purpose that will help us improve standards and build knowledge across the football industry.”

FCA Executive Committee member Phil Moss said that FCA looks forward to providing proactive legal advocacy, development and wellbeing support to elite male and female Australian players striving to transition successfully to a fulfilling professional coaching career.

“Coaches and players work together on the training pitch to achieve a common goal each week & over the course of their careers, so it makes perfect sense to maintain that collaborative approach off the field to ensure the game grows,” said Moss.

“The A-League and W-League have seen many former players now pursuing their coaching careers overseas and in the AL/WL/ NYL/ NPL and Academies. It is not an easy transition, so it is vital that the PFA and FCA collaborate with FFA and other education providers and networks to deliver best practice and innovation in preparing our professional coaches as leaders in driving our great game.

“FCA and the PFA are dedicated to promoting and strengthening the reputation of football in Australia, and the reputation of Australian football on the world stage.

“In addition, FCA and the PFA wish to foster the coaching cohorts at metropolitan and regional levels around the country to provide football programs, community connection and camaraderie to the youth pursuing their football goals and ongoing healthy and fit lifestyles.”