29 Oct 2015

Phoenix players shocked at FFA decision

12:10 pm on 29 October 2015

The Wellington Phoenix captain Andrew Durante said there was shock among the players when they first heard the news that Australian football's ruling body had declined the club's request for a 10-year A-League licence extension.

The season is over for skipper Andrew Durante and his Phoenix side, after a disappointing performance in the playoffs.

Wellington Phoenix captain Andrew Durante Photo: Photosport

Football Federation Australia said the Phoenix, whose licence expires at the end of the current season, can still request a four-year licence until the end of the 2019/20 season.

The club is yet to announce their next move.

Durante said the initial news was hard to take, "coming to training the next day there was a lot of questions, there was a lot of shock I guess."

"But since then we've had some meetings and as a captain and a senior group it is our job to keep things positive around the camp."

"It is out of our control and there is nothing as players that we can do besides play well every week and that is solely our focus and leave the rest to the people that make the decisions."

Durante said it is a bit annoying because compared to some other clubs, the Phoenix runs very smoothly.

"You look around some of the other clubs who are folding who the FFA are having to prop up and that is probably the most disappointing thing that we are not a club that is causing any issues in the league."

"We have a good group, we are playing good football, we don't cause any trouble, and we are stable, so to see other clubs struggling but get 20 year licences is hard to take."

Durante said to see the Phoenix go under would be shocking for kids of New Zealand, football players and even the young players in their academy.

He said the players are remaining positive and preparing for their next game which is in Melbourne against the victory next Monday.

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