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Ffa centre of excellence

The meaning of «ffa centre of excellence»

The FFA Centre of Excellence (formerly the Australian Institute of Sport Football Program) was a football talent identification and player development program run by Football Federation Australia (FFA) and was based at the Australian Institute of Sport, in Canberra. The Centre of Excellence ran this program for men: the program was one of the eight founding sports of the AIS in 1981. The FFA announced that the centre would close at the end of 2017.[1]

The AIS soccer program was funded by the Australian Federal Government, through the Australian Sports Commission. In 2005–2006 this funding amounted to A$1,115,000.[2] The format involved 20 students per year selected for an initial period of 12 months training and study, with the additional option of a second year. The men's program was residential, while the women's was training camp-based. Students were generally 15–17 years old when selected and required to have current, or pending, Australian citizenship.

The original stated aim of the men's program was

"To identify and develop players for the national under-20 youth team and to develop coaches through the Scholarship Coaching scheme".

Following the decision of several soccer graduates to represent other countries at a senior national level (e.g. Josip Simunic), the AIS implemented contracts whereby the cost of the scholarship would later have to be repaid by any graduate who went on to play soccer at a senior level representing a country – other than Australia – in international competition.[3]

AIS soccer has developed many players to represent Socceroos at the FIFA World Cup.

John Aloisi (1992), Marco Bresciano (1997), Brett Emerton (1995–1996), Joshua Kennedy (1998–1999), Mark Milligan (2002), Craig Moore (1992–1993), Lucas Neill (1994–1995), Josip Skoko (1992–1993), Mile Sterjovski (1996–1996), Mark Viduka (1992–1993) and Luke Wilkshire (1998), Josip Šimunić (1994–1996) for Croatia[1]

Lucas Neill (captain) (1994–1995), Craig Moore (1992–1993), Brett Emerton (1995–1996), Luke Wilkshire (1998), Joshua Kennedy (1998–1999), Adam Federici (2002), Vince Grella (1996–1997), Carl Valeri (2000–2001), Nikita Rukavytsya (2005–2006), Mark Milligan (2002), Dario Vidosic (2005–2006), Marco Bresciano (1997), Josip Šimunić (1994–1996) for Croatia [1]

Marco Bresciano (1997), James Holland (2006–2007), Mitchell Langerak (2005–2006), Matt McKay (2000–2001), Mark Milligan (2002), Matthew Spiranovic (2006), Dario Vidosic (2005–2006) [1]

The AIS fielded teams in the former National Soccer League's youth competition. Within that competition it was placed in the Northern Division. The AIS won three titles, in 1986, 1998 and 1999.

The men's program had previously entered a team in the New South Wales Premier League competition in 2005. In 2007 the AIS entered a team into the Victorian Premier League. This would allow regular, weekly competitive matches that were lacking for previous scholarship holders.[4] As part of their inclusion as the only non-Victorian team in the VPL competition, all 'home' fixtures were played in Victoria for the 2007 season. The side struggled for consistency throughout the season, finishing 12th on the ladder, however great benefit was reportedly gained from the participation in a men's competition. In 2008 the men's program team continued to participate in the Victorian Premier League, improving from the previous year as the AIS finished 8th on the ladder. AIS home games were also played in Canberra, while some high-profile matches which includes the Round 21 match between the AIS and the Preston Lions FC was played in Country Victoria at Rumbalara Oval, Shepparton. This was designed to promote the competition and bring the top state league competition to new areas.

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