Train drivers are threatening a 24-hour strike which would disrupt commuters attending next month’s AFL Showdown between Port Adelaide and the Adelaide Crows, due to an ongoing pay dispute.

The Rail, Tram, and Bus Union (RTBU) said it had notified private rail operator Keolis Downer Adelaide (KDA) of the 24-hour stoppage on May 2. 

Union secretary Darren Phillips said the strike threat was aimed at forcing KDA to improve its pay offer.

“We are absolutely concerned for footy fans wanting to come into town,” Mr Phillips said. 

“There is plenty of time between now and then to avoid that action and for us to sit down at the table and thrash this deal out.

“We don’t want to take this action, we want the deal done.”

The RTBU has been demanding a 20 per cent pay rise over four years, while KDA is offering a 14.7 per cent increase over the same period.

Darren Phillips says the union hopes to reach an agreement with Keolis Downer before May 2. (ABC News)

Mr Phillips said the RTBU would confirm whether the action would go ahead after a meeting with KDA next Friday. 

“Railway workers are frustrated after six months of negotiations, they’ve got cost of living pressures that we all feel,” he said. 

“We regret that we’re having this impact on commuters.”

In a statement, KDA said it was disappointed by the union’s decision to propose industrial action on the date of the Showdown. 

“We continue to negotiate terms of the Rail Operations Agreement in good faith with our staff, through the RTBU and hope to reach a mutually suitable resolution soon,” a spokesperson said. 

The state government has been contacted for comment. 

The union’s latest threat follows a series of work stoppages in the past two weeks.

Footy Express train services will be unavailable for those heading to Adelaide Oval on Friday night after the union on Thursday announced drivers would again stop work.

Train drivers have held a series of strikes due to an ongoing pay dispute. (ABC News: Che Chorley)

Peak-hour service closures were held on Tuesday and Wednesday, with the union signalling another possible rush-hour work stoppage on May 7 between 6am and 8am. 

KDA took over Adelaide’s rail network in 2021 after the former Liberal government privatised tram and train services.

Last year, the Labor government signed a deal with the operator to hand back train operations by 2025.