Dome: Phoenix 'pleased' with licence progress

Wellington Phoenix continue to negotiate with Football Federation Australia for an extended licence but general manager David Dome says the club is happy with how discussions are progressing.

Dome and his team have been pushing for an extended 10-year licence in the past months, and believe that negotiations are not far away from a resolution.

“Yeah, we are, I know it’s seemed like a bit of a glacial progress state,” Dome told the Daily Football Show.

“But we’re continuing negotiations with the FFA.

“They’re going well, the negotiations are going on in good faith.”

Despite ongoing discussions, Dome was happy with where both club and governing body were at in terms of agreement.

“You have to say that we’re pleased with where we’re at, we’re not a million miles away that’s for sure,” he said.

“We’re certainly a lot closer than we were than a couple of weeks ago.

“I don’t think it’s that much further and hopefully we’ll have some sort of resolution.”

Dome acknowledged though that there was still matters to be finalised and that it’s not over till it’s over.

“There’s still a lot of work to do, there’s no doubt about it, and these things are never done until they’re done”

“We’re moving towards a resolution and both parties are keen to see it happen.

“I guess you could say I’m heartened by the way the negotiations are going.”

One of the key sticking points with Football Federation Australia was the average attendance of the games in New Zealand, something that Dome acknowledges the club also needs to address.

“We have to get our average attendance up… we don’t want to be down the bottom of the A-League, which we’re not at the moment.”

“But we do want to be up where the average of the A-League is, which is around 12,000 this year, and we’re at about nine (thousand).

“It’s not going to happen, or resolve itself, overnight.”

Whilst attendances will not have an immediate impact, Dome hailed the #SaveTheNix campaign for its effect on the Wellington public who threw their support behind the club.

“We’ve had 26 percent growth in membership off the back of the Save The Nix campaign," he said.

“That’s a staggering amount and the highest amount of growth in the A-League.”

Dome is also aware that it’s not just New Zealand’s football fraternity and was heartened by the outpouring of support from across the Tasman in Australian footballing circles.

“If anything, the Save The Nix has shown the Phoenix is a valued part of the A-League and is a well respected club and well liked club," he said.

“Every single club came out in support of the Phoenix when this thing blew up so we took a lot of heart in that and it was very humbling in terms of how much support we did have from Australian clubs, Australian fans and even the Australian media.”