'Soccer' Will Officially Become 'Football' in Australia Next Year

MELBOURNE Australia (Associated Press) - Soccer will officially become football in Australia next year after the Australian Soccer Association (ASA) announced Thursday it will change its name to Football Federation Australia (FFA).

Association chairman Frank Lowy said the symbolic move would bring Australia into line with the majority of other countries which call the sport football.

Canada the United States and New Zealand are among the few countries that call the sport soccer in its organizational name.

Lowy admitted getting Australians to call the game football would not be easy. But he said he believed it was a significant step in improving the sport's profile ahead of the start of next year's new national competition the A League and World Cup qualifying.

One casualty of the name change may be the traditional nickname of the national team the Socceroos.

Lowy said the name could be past its use-by date and may eventually fade away.

"We are one of the few countries that calls its national team by a nickname Lowy said.

"It has been commonly used and is a much loved name but we may see it fade out as evolution takes place." "