The A-League is a professional men's soccer league run by Football Federation Australia (FFA). At the top of the Australian league system, it is the country's primary competition for the sport. The A-League was established in 2004 as a successor to the National Soccer League (NSL) and competition commenced in August 2005. The league is currently contested by ten teams; nine based in Australia and one based in New Zealand. It is known as the Hyundai A-League (HAL) through a sponsorship arrangement with the Hyundai Motor Company.
Seasons run from October to May and include a 27-round regular season followed by a Finals Series playoff involving the highest-placed teams, culminating in a grand final match. The winner of the regular season tournament is dubbed the 'premier' while the winner of the grand final is the season's 'champion'. This differs from the other major football codes in Australia, where 'premier' refers to the winner of the grand final and the winner of the regular season is the 'minor premier'.
Successful A-League clubs gain qualification into the continental competition, the Asian Football Confederation Champions League (ACL) also known as "AFC Champions League". Similar to the United States and Canada's Major League Soccer as well as other professional sports leagues in Australia and the United States, Australia's A-League does not practice promotion and relegation, unlike various football leagues in Europe.
Since the league's inaugural season, a total of six clubs have been crowned A-League Premiers and five clubs have been crowned A-League Champions. The current premier and champion is Sydney FC, who finished first in the 2016–17 league season and won the 2017 A-League Grand Final.
This article uses material from the Wikipedia article A-League
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