The A-League Men is notorious for a long preseason with each new campaign seemingly taking an age to come around.
Last season officially came to an end on May 28, 2022 when Western United beat Melbourne City 2-0 in the grand final.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021-22 season didn’t start until November 19, 2021 and ultimately had to deal with a backlog of games due to postponements.
Football Australia (FA) and the Australian Professional Leagues (APL) will be hoping for fewer interruptions this time around and have locked in some key dates for the A-League Men.
When will the 2022-23 A-League Men season start?
Football Australia confirmed in late June that the new A-League Men season is scheduled to kick off on October 7, 2022 with a grand final rematch between Melbourne City and Western United at AAMI Park.
This date is significantly earlier than the past two campaigns which began in November and December respectively as a result of COVID-19. Prior to that, seasons generally began in late October.
It’s hoped that the Australia Cup will be completed prior to the start of the 2022-23 A-League Men season.
The coming campaign is scheduled to conclude on May 27, 2023 with the grand final.
Will the A-League Men pause for the 2022 FIFA World Cup?
Due to the 2022 World Cup being held in Qatar, the tournament will be played across November and December to avoid excessive heat.
With the Socceroos having qualified for the tournament via the play-offs, Football Australia have ensured the A-League Men will pause between November 14 and December 9.
Games will restart before the end of the World Cup but the three-week break will allow the Socceroos to focus fully on their group campaign.
“Following extensive consultation with key stakeholders including Australian Professional Leagues (APL), Football Australia via the DMC 2022/23 has regulated that FIFA international windows for men’s and women’s football will be observed throughout 2022/23, with A-League Men’s and Women’s competitions to pause while the respective Australian senior national teams are in action,” a statement for FA read.
“This move will ensure that players selected for national team representation will not miss club matches during the periods in which they are on international duty, supporting an increase in match minutes for the individuals chosen to represent the Socceroos or Commonwealth Bank Matildas.”
The A-League Men did plan on breaking during FIFA windows last season but had to revise its schedule due to interruptions caused by COVID-19.