The Wellington Phoenix will write to Football Federation Australia arguing the A-League's integrity will be compromised by schedule clashes in October and March.
The Phoenix will have no option but to field badly under-strength teams against the Heart (October 14) and the Jets (March 23) unless they convince the FFA to change their draw.
Both games fall in Fifa windows and the Phoenix will probably lose seven players – Glen Moss, Mark Paston, Ben Sigmund, Tony Lochhead, Leo Bertos, Jeremy Brockie and Benjamin Totori – as well as coach Ricki Herbert to World Cup qualification duty.
The Oceania stage three qualifying draw was released yesterday and the All Whites play games on October 12 and 16 and March 22 and 26.
Phoenix general manager David Dome said the international games would take priority and, if the A-League draw stands, the club would have to call in players from outside the squad.
"I'm sure Ricki and the All Whites are going to want those players in camp for that time. Even if we wanted to it's very difficult to pull players out of one camp and put them into our starting lineup and then have them leave right after," Dome said.
"It would disrupt both programmes and I don't think it's likely, put it that way. At least now we've got a firm indication and we can now write to the FFA and get a formal response.
"We'd have to pull in a lot of players, there's no doubt about it. We'll lose a number of first-choice players."
The clash could make or break the Phoenix's season. Only six points separated the third-placed Glory and sixth-placed Heart last season.
"It's six points and we're also conscious of the goal difference aspect as well, which could make all the difference," Dome said.
The Phoenix had made the FFA aware of an impending clash before yesterday's Oceania release and received an "informal response".
"The FFA have been clear up to this point that they can't see the ability to reorganise the schedule around those games," Dome said.
"But now that we've got the actual dates we're going to go back and have a look at where we think those games should be rescheduled to, and put a different proposal on the table and just see if that affects the outcome.
"We want to push those games to later in the week, potentially midweek games. But that's obviously not going to be to the benefit of the Australian teams."
The All Whites kick off the next stage of qualifying with an away game against New Caledonia on September 7.
New Caledonia stunned the All Whites with a 2-0 win in their Oceania Nations Cup semifinal in the Solomon Islands earlier this month.
The winner of stage three progresses to a home and away playoff against the fourth best team from Concacaf (North and Central America) in November 2013 for a place at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
New Zealand Football chief executive Grant McKavanagh said choosing venues for the three All Whites home games would now gather pace.
"We're committed to spreading games around the country and now we have dates locked in we can progress those discussions with councils and venues keen to host a World Cup qualifier," McKavanagh said.
September 7: New Caledonia v All Whites September 11: All Whites v Solomon Islands October 12: Tahiti v All Whites October 14: Melbourne Heart v Phoenix October 16: All Whites v Tahiti March 22: All Whites v New Caledonia March 23: Phoenix v Newcastle Jets March 26: Solomon Islands v All Whites
- © Fairfax NZ News
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