Knights have licence revoked by soccer body

Football Federation Australia (FFA) tonight revoked the licence of Auckland-based soccer franchise the New Zealand Knights.

The FFA said the club's owners, Octagon Sports Limited, had breached their club participation agreement for the A-League.

It ends a tumultuous day for the Knights owners, who are understood to be A$800,000 ($920,704) in debt.

The FFA said it had an agreement with New Zealand Soccer (NZS) for the national body to manage the club's operations for the remainder of the 2006-07 A-League season.

That would ensure the Knights play all their scheduled matches for the remainder of the season.

The FFA said it had assured Knights players that their contracts would be fulfilled until the end of this season.

All Whites coach Ricki Herbert would assume the head coach position at the Knights immediately.

"The action that we had to take today is disappointing as the FFA has gone to great lengths since the commencement of the league to support Octagon Sports Limited, who currently owe the FFA in excess of A$800,000," FFA head of operations Matt Carroll said.

- NZPA

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