A-League expansion has been put on ice with the announcement of two new teams to be pushed back.
A delayed decision is expected next month which would likely push entry into the league back a season to 2020-21, but Canberra have firmed as one of the favourites.
Canberra is the only ready-to-go bid with with a stadium deal, government support, a commitment from members and links to overseas clubs already in place.
The Football Federation Australia board were set to vote in two new clubs on Tuesday, but with four directors standing down at next month's annual general meeting, the decision was deferred.
It means bids have been left in limbo and will be waiting in the wings for at least another month but Canberra has emerged as a genuine dark horse against cashed-up Sydney and Melbourne bids.