Launceston's NPL Tasmania clubs have embraced confirmation of an eight-team league but expressed concerns over plans for youth, reserves and women's competitions.
Launceston City president Danny Linger and his Riverside Olympic counterpart Stuart McCarron both felt the eight-team NPL Tasmania make-up created by the merger of Clarence and Hobart Zebras laid a sound foundation for the future of the competition.
"We believe that the NPL staying as it is for the next two seasons provides stability with the competition made up of eight sides with no promotion and relegation," McCarron said.
Linger said it was "the only sensible decision that could have been made".
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"There had been resistance from most of the clubs for a long time against the move to a 10-team comp," he said.
"There just is not enough depth in the state for 10 teams and certainly no more than two in Launceston.
"In saying that, the North needs fair representation to avoid a Southern-weighted comp."
However, both club figureheads aired concerns from the recommendations made by Football Tasmania when it announced the findings of an independent competition review earlier this month.
We need to build better pathways to elite footballLaunceston City president Danny Linger
McCarron feared a proposed NPL reserves competition from 2022 would risk the viability of the Northern Championship while Olympic had reservations about the future of under-16 and women's competitions.
"We remain committed to our women's program and have come under considerable pressure to form a Women's Super League team for the 2020 season," McCarron said after Olympic's women's team clinched this season's Northern Championship title.
"Unfortunately, we do not believe that it is possible at this stage."
"The idea of having a combined Launceston team also does not seem to have enough interest to be viable.
"We will continue to investigate options going forward, but in the meantime the women's championship will continue as is."
Proposals for the under-16 division one to be played in conjunction with the Northern Championship had led to concerns about how early the team may be travelling on Saturdays, particularly for fixtures on the North-West Coast.
City's teams dominated junior competitions this season, with the under-18s failing to win just one of their 21 fixtures as they cruised to the title.
Linger said a key priority of the Prospect club was to safeguard the game's junior structure.
"We need to build better pathways to elite football in this state and I'm not sure of the best way to do that," he said.
"There are plenty of ideas, they just need to be managed around the resources and players available.
"Launceston City is working very hard to provide good quality programs to enable our juniors to progress right up to the elite level, if that is the path they wish to take, but most importantly we are aiming to retain them within our club for the duration of their playing career."
City and Olympic finished seventh (25 points) and eighth (14 points) respectively in this season's NPL Tasmania with only Clarence below them. It was Riverside's first season back in statewide competition.
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