Football Australia has drawn a line in the sand and is prioritising its image - and the Matildas' image - over the health and wellbeing of a former player.
The joint statement responding to Lisa De Vanna's allegations of sexual harassment, indecent assault and bullying during her career unfolded like a paid advertising campaign reserved for companies launching a new face mask through social media influencers, not a response to horrific allegations.
FA shared its statement on Monday, limiting interactions on social media, before 15 contracted Matildas players followed suit and simultaneously shared it alongside their pre-approved comments in a carefully planned move.
The statement itself only mentioned De Vanna's name once.
And the players, who she shared several of her 150 national caps with, did not mention her name at all in their individual responses, choosing instead to speak about their own positive experiences.
We see this happen time and time again when allegations arise. People distance themselves from the victim as they personally have had a 'positive' experience. This aids in discrediting the victim, and dismissing their claims.
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Presumably it was under the watchful eyes of FA lawyers that the Matildas took the approach they did in good faith, to prove the culture had been flourishing for the past decade, as several players noted their long national careers as evidence.
Subsequently it missed the mark and has rightfully been labelled disingenuous, scripted, rehearsed and tone deaf. Because the allegations are not about today's Matildas, they are about historical allegations which need to be investigated alongside previous FA administrations who failed De Vanna when she reported them.
The allegations were an opportunity to do better, with the Sport Integrity Australia's independent complaint process the first step. The next step was supporting De Vanna, and using it as a lesson to do better next time by apologising and sending support from the current Matildas group, rather than using it as PR to promote an 'everything is fine' message to distance themselves from it.
It also pushed the message the Matildas playing group's culture was iron clad for the past several years, but in the process contradicted the reasoning behind Alen Stajcic's dismissal.
Was there a cultural issue in the lead-up to the review in 2018, or was there not? You can not have it both ways.
"Safe haven" and "second family" were also reoccurring words used in the statement, but they were not afforded to De Vanna. Instead the group, many of whom she had played alongside, distanced itself from her.
While older players - such as Elise Kellond-Knight, Tameka Yallop, Clare Polkinghorne and Lydia Williams - used words such as "current" environment, growing the culture, building the professionalism, hinting at the side's change in recent years while not dismissing De Vanna's experience.
In the end FA should have allowed genuine and unfiltered responses from players, rather than treating it as a PR exercise to tick the boxes and move on ahead of the side's return home later this month.
Because a polished, calculated response does two things.
It breeds fear - to not speak out of term. And it promotes silence.