Women's World Cup success to boost grassroots football

Australia and New Zealand's successful bid to jointly host the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup will inspire a legion of girls to pursue football.

"It will inspire our girls and our player base, broadly," said Springwood United Football Club's female football co-ordinator Rene Dempsey.

"They can become what they see. Not necessarily an international football star, but a girl can play football if she wants to."

It will be the first FIFA Women's World Cup to be held in the Asia-Pacific region. After the June 26 announcement, Matildas star Sam Kerr tweeted a gif of her celebrating a goal with a backflip, followed by another tweet that said "We did it. We freaking did it".

Mrs Dempsey had nothing but praise for the Australian women's national football team.

"Sam Kerr and Ellie Carpenter have done fantastic things for our game. They are fantastic role models and talented," she said.

"Up and coming players will also be showcased to our girls. If they can see it, they can do it."

Over the past couple of years Springwood United has been focused on building female participation. The club now boasts 259 female players.

This season, which kicks off with games from July 4, will see the club enter its first girls under 8 and under 9 teams in the Nepean Football Association competition. Previously, there were only enough girls to play in mixed teams until under 13s.

In a bid to make football even more accessible to girls, Mrs Dempsey has applied for a $4000 Sport NSW grant, to provide each female player with a soccer ball so they can practice in their backyard, in addition to club training. The club is also looking to provide specific goalie and striker training for girls, as well as a mentoring program.


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