Australia's league loses a football team
Feb 29, 2012, 6:32 GMT
Sydney - Football Federation Australia on Wednesday kicked bottom-ranked Gold Coast United out of the A-League after a tirade against federation chairman Frank Lowy from team owner Clive Palmer.
The professional game is now down to nine teams. Financial difficulties forced North Queensland to give up its licence last year.
Lowy said he revoked the Gold Coast United licence after mining billionaire Palmer's 'flagrant disregard' for A-League rules.
Palmer, always an enthusiastic litigant, promised legal action against the federation.
'We intend to fight this ludicrous decision by incompetent FFA in the courts,' he said in a statement. 'Frank Lowy is an institution who now belongs in an institution.'
Palmer's criticism of the federation extended to sending his players on the pitch in jerseys emblazoned with a Freedom of Speech slogan. He said he would not be silenced and that the controversial jerseys would be worn again at the weekend game against Wellington Phoenix.
Palmer claimed the jumper slogan was not aimed at the federation, saying he could not 'see anything wrong with such a simple but meaningful statement such as the right to freedom of speech.'
Billionaire shopping mall owner Lowy took over as football supremo in 2003, setting up the federation and starting the A-League.
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