Gallop slams A-League squatters, Phoenix

Football Federation Australia chief David Gallop has blamed the off-field failures of Wellington Phoenix for the club’s uncertain future.

Gallop unleashed on the New Zealand outfit saying it had fallen short in crowds, television ratings and memberships.

Phoenix were denied a 10-year licence extension and could be out the door at the end of the season if they decline a four-term option.

There was no back-pedalling by Gallop on Wednesday when asked about the controversial decision.

The club's on-field accomplishments were not in question after finishing fourth in the league last season.

But Gallop said: “We’re ambitious for the growth of the A-League.

“You can’t expect to squat on a licence.”

He added: “On any metric, they’re not performing at a level we like for the growth of the competition.”