Give Joondalup United its rightful place in the WA NPL
On Saturday, September 17, Joondalup United were crowned State League Champions with a 3-1 win over Western Knights. The success crowned a meteoric rise for the club from humble beginnings in the Football West Amateur Leagues 16 years prior.
With State League title success comes promotion to the National Premier League (NPL) once certain criteria are met. According to Football West, and based on the account of third parties, Joondalup United had ticked all of the off field boxes to join the top table in Western Australia.
Having been assured that their place in the NPL was safe, Joondalup United spent thousands on preparing for the 2017 season and held trials on the basis that the club would be among the best in WA for next season.
More than 70 players attended trials for the club's 18s and 18 were signed, with parents paying a fee to secure their child's place in the squad. Meanwhile, Joondalup United coaches have been upskilling through Football West's C Licence course.
On Friday, November 11, Joondalup United was requested to attend a meeting with Football West where the governing body informed the club's representatives that a challenge from recently relegated Subiaco AFC would shift the goal posts completely.
Following a threat of legal action by Subiaco over Joondalup United's adherence to the NPL criteria, Football West has simply taken the easy way out by putting a block on promotion and relegation until 2017. A short statement was posted on the Football West website confirming this.
A letter from Football West to Joondalup United can be read here in its entirety. Joondalup United has yet to receive an apology from Football West for the way it has been treated.
This is not the first time that Subiaco has flexed its muscles and been a protected species under Football West - they were gifted a spot in the NPL in 2013 at the expense of South West Phoenix who were simply removed from the league.
The WA football community has understandably had enough of hand outs and unethical practices when its they who hand over thousands of dollars every year to fund the various competitions overseen by Football West.
Football is a sport that should be decided on the pitch, not in court rooms, and Joondalup United have earned the right to play at the highest level in Western Australia.
Joondalup United have been inundated with warm sentiments from people from other clubs who have offered to help in any way that they can. A situation like this will only make the club and the community stronger in the long run.
It is now up to Football West to fight for the integrity of the game and Joondalup United asks that you sign this petition as a show of support.
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