Newly appointed PFA Executive Member Bruce Djite gives his thoughts on the role of the players in upcoming CBA negotiations.

I am very proud and excited to have recently been named on the PFA Executive.

I have always felt that the PFA has played a crucial role in the wellbeing of Australian footballers worldwide.

The PFA does a lot of work that players don’t see and personally I wanted
to be closer to the ‘action’.  I feel that it is crucial for players to be actively involved in the running of the PFA and to have a say in the decision making process.

I feel that being part of the PFA Executive gives me the insight and knowledge that I can relay back to my fellow players.

It is imperative for the players to be more and more involved with the asking of the hard questions, and we must insist that we are given basic protections as the game continues to grow.

My position on the PFA Executive will allow me to have a more active role in pursuing our goals and ensuring that as players our concerns are heard.

It is generally expected that in a well-developed country such as Australia, players’ contracts will be respected, honoured and secure. However, with the debacles of late it is clear that we as players cannot just sit back and expect things to fall into place.

I have no doubt that we will have to negotiate hard for some basic conditions that we simply expect to already be entitled to. I look forward to being involved with such negotiations and in educating other players, especially the younger players, of the importance of the PFA and its role in negotiating an appropriate and fair CBA.

A fair CBA that is strongly governed will and should protect players from the previous adversities that we have been exposed to (think Gold Coast United/ North Queensland Fury/Newcastle Jets/Peter Perchtold/Jason Culina/Robson).

To me it’s vital that players fully understand all of the ways the PFA can support them during and after their careers, and I look forward to playing my part in helping all players and the PFA achieve our goals.

Bruce Djite