A-League boss defends failed attempts to evacuate Melbourne sides from Victoria

A-League boss Greg O'Rourke has defended the competition's handling of its failed attempts to relocate three Melbourne clubs to NSW.

Western United's Andrew Durante Source: Photosport

Speaking to Melbourne radio station SEN this morning, O'Rourke said they are waiting to hear whether NSW will grant travel exemptions for Wester United, Melbourne City and Melbourne Victory.

"If we were to receive an exemption, we would move within 24 hours," he said.

This week the teams had two failed attempts to leave Victoria before border restrictions kicked in.

"We managed to get a chartered jet to leave in three hours," he said.

"We were planning to take off to Canberra [on Monday] and just before take-off the pilots were advised that Canberra Airport was closed.

"If it was open, we wouldn't be having this conversation. The guys would be out."

A second attempt to fly to Canberra was also aborted when it became clear the players would have to quarantine there for two weeks.

"We have another plan, which we're working on with the NSW government re exemptions today, which we remain optimistic on."

He admitted there was a possibility that Victorian-based clubs would play their games against each other in Victoria.

If an exemption isn't granted, the league's scheduled resumption on July 16 is uncertain.

"The sand continues to move under us, as it does a lot of people in Australia, particularly in Victoria."