THE AFL insists it did its best to accommodate the possibility of an A-League Grand Final in Victoria, blaming a lack of communication from Melbourne Victory and soccer's governing body for a potential clash.
The League has explained broadcasting, scheduling and major events general manager Simon Lethlean had been asked by Etihad Stadium and Melbourne Victory to keep the Docklands venue available for Sunday 10 May.
"The AFL accommodated the possibility of that request for the weekend of May 8-10 by scheduling only two matches at Etihad Stadium across that round, while separately also delivering on a request from the Victorian Government for the MCG to be kept free on a consecutive Friday, Saturday and Friday in mid-July for a visit by leading European soccer teams," the League said in a statement on Wednesday afternoon.
The League said it had received "no further communication" from Etihad Stadium or Melbourne Victory and had no contact "at any time" from Football Federation Australia.
It said the first hint of the A-League Grand Final being played a week later came just 12 days ago.
"On October 16, the Victorian state government advised the AFL the A-League Grand Final could be played on May 17, 2015, and the AFL was formally contacted by the FFA on October 21 to enquire whether it could keep this May 17 date free at Etihad Stadium", the statement said.
"Mr Lethlean said the AFL had advised the FFA last week it could not restructure its fixture at that late stage, as five matches had been confirmed in Victoria for that weekend and the AFL was now in the process only of confirming match timeslots for each game with its broadcast partners and clubs.
"The AFL advised it could not alter the number of matches per round in Victoria at that late stage because the AFL had less flexibility around its 2015 fixture due to a later start to the season, caused by the Cricket World Cup, as well as the fact that all clubs now have only one bye through the season, compared to two byes through 2014.
"Etihad Stadium Management today confirmed to the AFL that no updated request for a date change had been put forward to the AFL from their offices."
FFA released a statement later on Wednesday "reaffirming that all stakeholders in Victoria were advised in May this year that the 2014-15 Hyundai A-League Grand Final would be played on either 10 May or 17 May."
The 2015 Toyota AFL Premiership Season fixture is being released on Thursday.