Football Federation Australia (FFA) has dismissed the A-League clubs' suggestion that they are keeping over 50 per cent of competition-produced revenue as "totally incorrect".
FFA CEO David Gallop has argued the governing body's proposed allocation of $3.25million per club for the 2017-18 season is an "cash funding" increase of 26 per cent.
On Tuesday, Gallop met with the chairmen and CEOs of the 10 A-League clubs to outline the funding model for next season.
The clubs rejected FFA's proposal of $3.25m per club, and in a subsequent statement from their representative body - the Australian Professional Football Clubs Association (APFCA) - labelled it "wholly inadequate".
The APFCA, which is pushing for greater autonomy and control over the A-League, claimed the total figure of $32.5m "represents less than 50 per cent of the FFA's own calculations of direct revenues produced by the A-League".
David Gallop, Football Federation Australia
But Gallop rejected that assertion: "The suggestion by the clubs that FFA will return less than 50 per cent of the revenue generated by the clubs in the coming year is totally incorrect.
"The reality is that FFA spending on the A-League in 2017-18 closely matches revenue generated by the league when cash distributions and league operating costs such as team travel, player insurance and match officials - which are paid for centrally - are taken into account.
"If the A-League was a stand-alone entity all of these costs would still need to be met.
"For this reason, the distribution communicated is affordable, without placing undue pressure on other areas of the game."
Gallop added that FFA is continuing to work on a new operating model for the A-League that should "change the investment returns for our owners, allow for new investors and new clubs, while maintaining funding for the rest of the game".
But with funding required for grassroots football and various national teams, Gallop insisted FFA cannot provide more to the clubs.
"It was hardly surprising that the owners of the clubs want more money and we are providing them with more money after reducing FFA's own costs significantly," he said. "But the FFA Board also has a responsibility to the 1.1 million participants in community football and our national teams program.
"The only way we can provide the clubs with more money is to cut more funding to the grassroots and junior and senior national teams and we do not believe that is in the interests of football in this country."
The APFCA is increasingly becoming a direct adversary to FFA in the struggle to define football's future in Australia.
FFA failed to meet FIFA's deadline in March to expand its congress - the body that elects directors to the board - because the APFCA combined with Football Victoria and Football NSW to block the national governing body's preferred model.
It has been reported FFA wants to increase the clubs' votes in the congress from one to three in a 13-vote body, but the APFCA want at least five votes from a total of 16.