The FA Cup is the oldest association soccer tournament in the world after first being played in 1871/72 but surprisingly the tournament format never made it to Australia…until now.  The Football Federation Australia (FFA) announced that their own version of the knock-out tournament will debut July with the final on December 16.

Umbro will supply the official match ball, the Neo 150 Elite.  The 14-panel ball has a traditional look with black and white hexagonal panels but with a modern look provided by 2-tone detailing on each panel.  The ball includes a tri-pli lining system and Teigin outer.

Umbro Neo 150 Elite FFA Cup match ball

Umbro Neo 150 Elite FFA Cup match ball

“To have an international company with the footballing pedigree of Umbro supply the official match ball for the inaugural Westfield FFA Cup competition is an exciting prospect,” FFA CEO David Gallop said at the Ilinden Sports Centre.  “We look forward to working with Umbro for this inaugural edition of the Westfield FFA Cup and beyond.”

600 clubs have started the preliminary matches to determine the Round of 32 teams.  The A-League, Australia’s top division, will join during this round.  They will be joined by 22 teams from Queensland (four clubs), New South Wales (seven), Northern NSW (two), Victoria (four), ACT (one), Tasmania (one), South Australia (one) and Western Australia (two).

“This is a moment we have dreamed about for years and to finally have it happen is really exciting,” Gallop went on to add.  “The holy grail for Australian football for so many years (has been) the connection of grassroots to professional football – the FFA Cup embodies that, which is why we’re so excited.”