The biggest change in the history of the W-League and A-League has been been signed off by club bosses and the FFA – and will overhaul the way the game is governed in Australia.
The New Leagues Working Group has come back with an historic deal that will see the clubs take ownership of the A-League, W-League and Y-League.
A final date of August 1 has been set to draw up the legal paperwork to finalise the deal, but the agreements are now in place for the new set up to kick in in time for this season.
The new spin-off leagues body will take total control of the top tier leagues, with the FFA receiving a licence fee equal to 1.125x what the new league body gives to each club, which will effectively be $4.25m in the first year.
But the FFA will also forgo their licence fee from the new body for the first four years while it establishes itself.
The FFA will also get a 10% cut of any new licence fees for clubs, and a cut of the sale of any club licences, and will also retain a 20% share interest in the new league body but not have any voting rights.
The FFA will also take a 10% cut of any player transfer fees too under the new deal, but clubs will now own all commercial rights and 100% of their intellectual property under the deal.,
The clubs have also sacrificed their right to nominate three members of the FFA's Women's Council and will now just nominate one, with the other two now nominated "independently".
The deal is specifically designed so the FFA will not be any worse off than it currently is financially.
The final contract for the breakaway body will now be drawn up to be approved by the FFA board and Congress next month in time for the new season kick off in October.
A management team from FFA will initially run the league and "evolve rapidly in the coming season and thereafter with clubs committing to providing the necessary capital and human resource investments," said the APFCA in a joint statement.
Club bosses say the deal will now allow them to invest heavily in the A-League's future, but question marks remain over Fox Sports interpretation of the new body.
There are fears the pay TV giant - currently facing a massive squeeze on spending - may see it as an opportunity to walk away from the current TV rights deal which was agreed with the FFA rather than the new independent league body.
But football's leaders today hailed the landmark agreement.
"For the professional game in Australia, and indeed the game as a whole in our country, these recommendations are the foundations for a critically needed evolution and vitalisation," said Australian Professional Football Clubs Association chair, Paul Lederer:
"Once executed they will create the environment for investment and associated opportunities that we all want to see.
"The 12 member clubs of APFCA are focused on completing the NLWG process and beginning the transformation process in earnest.
"Our members are committed to investing in and delivering the elevation of all three of our National Professional Leagues to the status they deserve and the levels that all of the stakeholders of our game rightfully expect. The real work begins now.”
FFA chairman Chris Nikou - who replaced Steven Lowy after the APFCA led a boardroom coup - was also delighted by the deal.
"The recommendations of the NLWG serve to align and unite Australian footballs’ interests like never before," he said today.