It’s been two years since Australia and New Zealand won the right to host the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup
Important preparatory activities were held in light of the first edition of the tournament, which includes 32 countries
A delegation from Antipodes visited Zurich this week
Hosting the FIFA Women’s World Cup was on the line. All work has been done and an order has been submitted. The Sydney Opera House has been covered in portraits of Australian captain Samantha Kerr and her New Zealand counterpart Ali Riley. All that remains is to wait. Exactly two years ago, the news finally broke – and the euphoria began. Hard work was rewarded in submitting a compelling nomination and the exhilaration was immediate. Local media has been swept by news that the world’s largest women’s singles event is set to go to Down Under.
Once the adrenaline rush calmed down, local organizers, along with staff based in Zurich, got to work preparing for the biggest women’s World Cup ever.
Since then, a lot has happened in preparation for the first edition of the 32-team tournament. Well-staffed offices have been set up in Auckland and Sydney, with smaller branch offices in other cities. FIFA staff have visited the site on several occasions, on top of which was the recent visit by FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura. Sarai Barman, head of the women’s soccer team, told the FA. “It’s the biggest women’s sporting event in the world and it inspires not only the players and people on the field, but also the people off the field, the women and girls and the community at large. It would be amazing, I get goosebumps just thinking about it.”
“This is going to be one of the biggest events these countries have ever hosted,” said Dave Beachy, CEO of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 Australia and New Zealand, working alongside Jane Fernandez, Managing Director of Operations (Australia). Jane Patterson, Director of Operations (New Zealand), is part of a delegation visiting FIFA this week.
“There is a lot of excitement and huge potential for this tournament. Both countries are coming together to support it. The excitement is very clear.”
Several stadiums are being renovated, as well as training sites. The Sydney Football Stadium has been completely redesigned and has become Matildas will have the honor of hosting the stadium’s first football match in September, against Olympic champion Canada.
“We want to give sports fans an experience they will never forget, world-class football on the pitch, a seamless experience from buying tickets to getting out of the stadium and everything in between. It’s right in the middle,” Fernandez said.
“We have just over a year left for the tournament to kick off on July 20 and of course there’s no tournament without a mascot, so we’re really looking forward to introducing you to the mascot more later in the year.”
Another milestone will be the official draw in Auckland on October 22nd. New Zealand’s largest city will also have the honor of hosting the opening match. While the focus is on the tournament itself, the long-term legacy is on the minds of both sides of the Tasman Sea. “The World Cup will inspire a lot of young people, boys and girls, because they will get the chance to watch the best players in the world play on their home soil. So it’s a unique opportunity,” Patterson said. “We know that when young players see their heroines, there is inspiration that they will want to move on and hopefully it will be a lasting legacy, that they are inspired and want to kick the ball.” To find out how to apply for FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023™ tickets, click over here.
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