State Government must invest in infrastructure NOW to ensure success of 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup games in Adelaide: SA-BEST
The State Government must immediately invest additional money in key infrastructure to ensure the success of games to be played in Adelaide as part of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, SA-BEST said today.
SA-BEST MLC and Sport and Recreation spokesperson, Frank Pangallo, said the investment needed to be made at a number of sporting venues – not just Hindmarsh Stadium – so the state is in a position to attract international teams to base themselves in Adelaide to prepare for the tournament.
As a minimum, Hindmarsh Stadium needs to be expanded from the projected capacity of 16,000 seats to 20,000 seats under the $75 million revamp announced last year.
He also called on the government to immediately commit $3 million to ensure the completion of the West Adelaide Hellas ground at Kilburn, while Adelaide City’s headquarters at Oakden, the Bircalla Eagles facility at Camden and Campbelltown City’s ground at Newton should also be upgraded.
Frank said all four grounds would be ideal for international teams to use as a training and playing base in the lead up to the tournament.
“I welcome the announcement by FIFA that Adelaide is one of the nine host cities for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the much needed economic and tourism boost that will give the entire state,” Frank said.
“An injection of funding will ensure Adelaide is in a prime position to attract soccer teams from some of the world’s leading countries to base themselves here so they can train and play friendly games in the lead up to the actual tournament,” he said.
“We need to ensure our soccer grounds and training facilities are at the standard expected by FIFA, which will require some pitches to be grassed.
“Many grounds require both male and female change rooms and this needs to be addressed as a priority.
“Hindmarsh Stadium will be locked down and not be able to be used for training 6-8 weeks out from the tournament so its imperative other soccer grounds in the metropolitan area are up to tournament-standard.”
FIFA announced this morning Adelaide has been selected as one of nine host cities for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, which is being hosted between Australia and New Zealand.
The other Australian host cities are Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney, while Auckland, Dunedin, Hamilton and Wellington have been announced as New Zealand’s host cities.
“Women’s football is extremely popular and the last Women’s World Cup in France attracted massive crowds and significant tourism dollars for the various host cities,” Frank said.
“Beyond the World Cup, the government needs to look at the future of the game and leave a legacy for future generations of male and female players,” he said.
“The 2023 Women’s World Cup will be a terrific opportunity to showcase our state to the rest of the world at a time when, hopefully, we are all coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“People will be jumping out of the skin to travel – both internationally and domestically – and we know sports fans have been starved of attending international sports events for more than a year now.”