Why the A-League needs Fernando Torres

The Spanish star would be a vital addition to the competition

In an ideal world, the A-League won't need big-name marquees to attract fans to the competition but as it stands that's exactly the short-term boost required. 

With one more season before much-needed expansion, a continued lack of effective marketing and the momentum of a World Cup to build off - a household name is just what the A-League needs.

After a season of dwindling crowds and slumping TV ratings, the competition must buck the trend to ensure there is a strong foundation to build off for years to come. 

Fernando Torres appears to be a possible way to do just that after The Covert Agent revealed the Spanish striker has significantly lowered his wage demands.

With the FFA reportedly prepared to cover $2 million of the costs to bring a marquee like Torres to Australia, they clearly see the value of one again and it's hard to disagree with the investment.

Social media was abuzz when it was reported that Torres is now a step closer to joining the A-League, with more than a few fringe supporters vowing to attend games again should the Spaniard be playing. 

Fernando Torres Europa League 16052018

Logistically speaking, a marquee like Torres does demand a lot of money and some have pointed out that such money should be put into grassroots football.

Though extra funding of grassroots is no doubt needed, the short-term advantage of Torres would be massive and can itself be an invaluable fertiliser.

As is often pointed out, football is just one of many sports competing for the attention of kids in Australia and while already with an edge in terms of participation, bringing a big-name Down Under can only sharpen that advantage.

With families given an added reason to make the trek to an A-League game and kids itching to watch every minute Torres plays in the competition, the value of a marquee, if harnessed right, can be more than just a commercial one. 

That said, the commercial boost can also not be under-estimated, particularly in the current climate.

The World Cup has seen a number of fringe football fans emerge and securing a player that has actually won the tournament, is a very attractive way to convert them to the A-League.

Australia fans World Cup 2014

Any such conversion, if Alessandro Del Piero's stint was any indication, will have huge ramifications for the competition in terms of bigger crowds and healthier TV audiences.

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With the A-League looking to expand, those two things are vital to ensure growth is sustainable moving forwards.

Sydney FC are looming as a likely destination for Torres after they lost both Bobo and Adrian Mierzejewski for a rumoured transfer sum of $2 million - incidentally the exact amount a club will need to pay Torres

The Sky Blues have already reaped the benefits of marquees in the past and as they prepare for a tough season split between three stadiums, a big-name is exactly what they and the A-League as a whole sorely needs.