Football Victoria has confirmed a brand new women's league for next season, but it won't include Ballarat City.
The new division will be positioned between the current state league one competition and the National Premier League Victoria Women's top tier, the NPLW.
Following a review of female competition structures, it was recommended that the division be launched by either 2020 or 2021 (pending majority consensus from clubs).
Recommendations were also that the new league be made up of the top state league one clubs from the south-east and north-west divisions and that these clubs meet both on and off-field standards which reflect the increase in standard from state league one.
It was also advised that promotion and relegation between the new competition and state league one commenced at the end of the first full season of play.
FV sent a survey to all women's state league clubs to determine their position on the proposed structure. The survey was distributed to 114 clubs and almost 84 per cent of those which voted preferred to commence the new division from 2020.
The division, which is yet to be named, will be made up of the following 10 teams.
- Boroondara Eagles FC
- Casey Comets FC
- Eltham Redbacks FC
- Galaxy United FC
- Melbourne Knights FC
- Melbourne Uni SC
- Preston Lions FC
- South Yarra FC
- Southern United FC
- Whitehorse United FC
This means Ballarat City, which finished last on the state league one north-west table with just two wins in 2019, will remain in that league next year.
The City girls were late entrants into state league one this year, taking the place of a club which withdrew from the competition.
Tessa Curtain was head coach of the senior side and is set to continue in the role next season.
In December 2018, the Ballarat Eureka Strikers voted to joined forces with Ballarat City and merge as one entity.
In a statement, FV stated that all other state league structures will be confirmed in the upcoming weeks, including the promotion and relegation rules. State league one will be made up of 10 teams for both north-west and south-east conferences.
"The clubs overwhelmingly voted for the new division to be introduced from next season. This is an exciting change for women's football in Victoria. The proposal has been recommended to allow for promotion and relegation to occur into the top tier of competition and create a more defined second state-based women's tier," FV Board Director and Chair of Football Committee Sezar Jakupi said.