FFA boss David Gallop admits any delay in rubber-stamping A-League expansion past January could threaten bidders' inclusion for next season.
The governing body is expected to recommend two expansion bids to the new board on December 12 with the aim of adding them to the next campaign.
The list has been whittled down to six franchises - two from NSW, three from Victoria, and a sixth from the ACT.
"There will be a report on the 12th of December and we hope to be in a position where there's a final recommendation that can be made," Gallop said.
While a final decision isn't likely to be made until January, Gallop indicated that any further hold-up could hinder the franchises' introduction until the 2020-21 season.
"It's not absolutely critical that a decision is made on the 12th of December, but there's only a short period of time after that, perhaps into January," he said.
"If it went much past January, it would obviously put the 2019-20 season start under pressure."
Gallop was reluctant to discuss the chances of individual bids, but stressed that a cashed-up bid isn't the primary factor for selection.
It is believed a $13 million licence fee is a minimum requirement.
"It's silly to suggest that it was only ever about the licence fee," Gallop said.
"But clearly the financial position of the A-League and the rest of the game means that the financial equation is critical.
"We continue to talk to all the bids about making sure they've put their best foot forward in terms of the license fee, infrastructure, community engagement.
"These are topics that we are talking to the bidders about because making sure we get a range of factors to the best possible position is going to be important."
Gallop also conceded that while the FFA had already begun considering the format of a 12-team competition, their main focus was on the bidding process.
There are suggestions that a 22-round home-and-away campaign could replace the current 27-round season, reducing the amount of games for each club.
Socceroos coach Graham Arnold said 22 matches were not enough.
"Maybe you could set it up like a Belgium competition or set it up like the Denmark, Norwegian, Swiss competition that you can split the competition into two so if you play the 22 games, you have a top six, they play a home-and-away again and then you have a grand final," Arnold said.
"There is different ways of doing it, but the 22 rounds? I think we need a few more."