EXCLUSIVE: Canberra today gave up the fight for an A-League club after the FFA confirmed they had now ruled out any further expansion until at least 2015.
The surprise announcement of the new West Sydney club last month will be the last new side to join the A-League for at least the next three years, the FFA said this week.
The FFA say their efforts will now go into lifting the entertainment factor of the A-League instead of expansion.
"We plan to reassess the timing and possibilities of expansion in 2015," a spokesman told au.fourfourtwo.com.
"Making a 10 team Hyundai A-League commercially sustainable and a more appealing entertainment proposition is currently more important than expansion as a major priority at the moment."
The news has come as the final straw for the A-League4Canberra bid after years of battling for a chance to have a team in the competition.
Today the group met with the FFA but revealed they were winding up the campaign and refunding memberships after their efforts have proved to be in vain.
The group has been bidding to join the A-League since expansion from ten to 12 teams was first tabled in 2007/8.
They were sidelined by the bids from Melbourne Heart and Sydney Rovers in 2009 but insisted they would continue to fight for the 13th licence.
Since then though, Sydney Rovers collapsed without ever playing a game, and both North Queensland Fury and Gold Coast United have folded without Canberra getting a chance to replace them.
The FFA then announced the new West Sydney club for next season - but the latest decision to freeze all future expansion for at least three years has snuffed out the bid's final hope.
CEO Heather Reid today told au.fourfourtwo.com they had finally admitted defeat.
"The ALeague4Canberra bid group is being wound up and foundation memberships will be offered back to those who signed up," she said.
"We have around 18,000 players and we don’t have any further comment about the FFA APL at this stage."