According to Scottish news outlet Daily Record Sport, FFA have refused to allow A-League expansion side West Melbourne to dip into the governing body's marquee fund to sign Scott Brown.
Celtic captain Brown is reported to have rejected a two-year contract offer from West Melbourne, with the option of a third-year extension, after the club failed to reach the 33-year-old's wage demands.
Brown has also been offered a one-year contract extension from Celtic.
While Brown is an international veteran and still plays regularly for the Glasgow club, both his age and doubts over whether the Scottish midfielder would draw enough new fans to the league have thrown the deal into controversy.
Brown is currently on a family holiday in Dubai, not far from where the Socceroos are competing in the 2019 Asian Cup, but is understood to be reluctant to uproot his family from Scotland - at least until the right figures are offered.
It's unclear whether West Melbourne will be able to offer Brown a suitable contract without FFA's financial assistance.