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The A-League signings of Tim Cahill and, potentially, Michael Essien have cost Football Federation Australia almost a million dollars but chief David Gallop is delighted to spend the cash.Theres growing optimism at head office that season 12 of the A-League, which kicks off on October 7, will be a box office success.The arrival of Cahill, who gathers attention like no other A-League player, at Melbourne City is the primary reason.His crossover appeal delights league chiefs, as shown by his recent engagements with the fashion world or AFL club the Western Bulldogs.A further marketing spend - which was non-existent last year - will follow from FFA next month after the AFL and NRL grand finals.It will ask half-committed fans to find a team, pitching squarely at young families to fill seats at A-League matches.Gallop is also delighted at the growing list of high-profile Australian names that have signed up for the season ahead: Brett Holman, James Troisi, Rhys Williams and Bernie Ibini among them.Hed delight in Essien confirming his guest-player move to Melbourne Victory.Weve come to an arrangement with Victory - if they come to an arrangement with him - that were comfortable with, Gallop said.Its understood Essien is overseas considering the deal.If he agrees, Victory will put him through his paces in Melbourne before signing him to ensure his fitness for the A-League campaign.Gallop said Essien brought star power.A player like Essien can add to the halo around Tim because its another big global player that football fans will be excited about, he said.When you add that to the players that are coming back from overseas, then it starts to build the thesis that Ange (Postecoglou) has been espousing loudly lately.He watches a lot of football and he sees a lot of football that is not as good as the A-League.Should Essien sign, the $1 million pot of guest-player funding will be almost dry.But should Cahill and Essiens impact be felt as widely as FFA believes - including on important broadcast rights negotiations - the league could grow the pot next year.(An increase would be) hard for season 12 but were certainly going to look at it again for season 13, he said.Therell be a small amount (left over) but were open to discussions with other clubs.Its obviously pleasing that we allocated an amount of money and were getting to use it. 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The Dane followed up his first European Tour title last weekend with eight birdies and just a single dropped shot on Thursday for a one-stroke advantage over South Africas Allan Versfeld and Portugals Ricardo Santos. TALLADEGA, Ala. -- Youre going to hear a lot about risk versus reward this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway, especially when it comes to the 10 drivers battling for six remaining NASCAR Chase playoff transfers.Rightly so.Risk versus reward comes into play anytime late in a championship campaign when theres a seasons worth of effort on the line. But balancing aggression and temperance also always has been an integral part of racing at NASCARs most daunting superspeedway, especially in the restrictor-plate era.No other track fosters more of a win or bust attitude among competitors in the Sprint Cup Series. And this year, Talladega has been positioned as a cutoff race between rounds of the Chase, meaning that for a handful of racers, perhaps only a win will suffice.Sure, anything can happen at Talladega, and a driver could still qualify to move on in the Chase by being in the top eight of the point standings on Sunday night.Chase Elliott faces the longest odds in that regard. The Hendrick Motorsports rookie is 25 points behind the eighth-place cutoff, meaning that risking it all in an effort to win the Hellmanns 500 is his only realistic strategy for advancing.It puts us in a pretty simplistic situation this weekend, of having to have a really good run, if not have to win, Elliott said. But were looking forward to the challenge.By contrast, the Joe Gibbs Racing trio of Matt Kenseth, Kyle Busch and Carl Edwards seemingly looks comfortable, running 1-2-3 among winless drivers in this round of the Chase. With a cushion of 24 to 29 points between themselves and Joey Logano and Austin Dillon -- the drivers currently on the cutoff -- the Gibbs guys could theoretically run around at the back and try to dodge the accidents en route to the conservative top-20 finishes they need to move on.But history shows that playing it safe is nearly as dangerous as risking it all at Talladega. Cruise and collect often translates into cruise and get collected.I have wrecked here racing up front, wrecked in the back and wrecked while I was running in the middle, recalled Edwards.I know you cant make a plan that is foolproof here, he added. We just want to stay up front all day.Two drivers who have little to worry about Sunday are Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick, who already have their spots reserved in the next round by virtue of their wins at Charlotte and Kansas, respectively.Kyle Busch knows how quickly things can turn at Talladega. In 2014, he arrived as the points leader, but a wreck and subsequent 40th-place finish were the biggest factors in his failure to advance into the next round. Last year, Busch was below the cutoff line heading into Talladega, but an 11th-place finish was enough to bump him into the top eight.Even though the defending Cup series champion can advance in this years Chase with a 26th-place finish on Sunday, he knows he cant take even that for granted.You never can have any comfort and you do what you need to do in order to transfer through, Busch said. Its aall about the racing gods when it comes to the story of Talladega, and Ive been on both sides of it in the first two years of this [playoff] format.ddddddddddddIt doesnt always help to push too hard and try to advance yourself, and sometimes you just have to relax and take what the race gives you, he added. The key is to somehow stay out of trouble.Some drivers will argue that theres no point in trying to be defensive, that flat-out aggression is the only way to go -- no matter where they stand in the points race.Logano, who is on the bubble holding a tiebreaker over Dillon, vows to race for the win rather than points.I dont really think about how people are trying to knock me out; I think about how Im gonna knock other people out, said the driver of Team Penskes No. 22 Ford.?Thats my attitude. If Im on defense, were not gonna win. So we better stay on offense.?Everyones situation is different, but the last time I checked, this thing is called a race and I believe racers race, he continued.? Ive seen people ride around the back and crash. Ive seen guys running up front and crash. It happens, so being aware of your surroundings becomes very important throughout the race.Dillon hasnt been a threat to win a restrictor-plate race, but he has consistently avoided trouble and racked up top-10 finishes. In his first Chase, Dillon doesnt plan on doing anything different than usual on Sunday.Do we want to be aggressive, like we usually are, which works out for us, or do we want to wait and ride and try to make it to the end and try to make it through there? Dillon pondered. It just depends on your points position there.If youre out of the top-eight-points position and you need a win, youre going to go for broke, he noted. If youre sitting comfortably where you need to be and you can guard a top-5 finish, you just need to take that top-5 finish and go on, I think.It stands to reason that the drivers above the cutoff in the points -- Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Edwards, Kurt Busch and Martin Truex Jr. -- can afford to be more conservative than they guys on the bubble (Logano and Dillon) and especially those below the cutoff (Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski and Elliott).Kurt Busch is yet another driver who has experienced both sides of the risk versus reward equation. He knows that playing it safe isnt always the safest option, but he admitted kicking himself for years after aggressively going after a Chase win only to be spun out in the late stages.Winning versus finding a consistent finish is such a razor-blade edge versus wrecking, said the 2004 Cup series champion. Its a matter of just trying to understand your surroundings early in the race. If people are getting crazy, youve got to get out of there, or youve got to get up front and be in that top three.Honestly, though, Lady Luck is really the dictator of how well you are going to do at Talladega. Wholesale NFL Womens Jerseys China Womens NFL Jerseys Nike NFL Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys Outlet Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Wholesale NFL White Jerseys Discount Jerseys ' ' '