Sarah Walsh: 'A FIFA Women's World Cup in 2023 on home soil will completely change the game'
Australia and New Zealand are bidding to host the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2023 and FFA Head of Game Development Sarah Walsh believes the tournament could be a "game changer".
"We are in this tipping point in Australia where a major event like that [the FIFA Women's World Cup] would completely shift perceptions in Australia," said Walsh.
It would be the vehicle that amplifies all the work that we want to do and that we're talking about to completely another level."
This elevation of the game woud be for both female and male players. As well as the additional investment coming into the game, a FIFA Women's World Cup is an opportunity to fire the imagination of the next generation of Westfield Matildas and Socceroos.
A former Westfield Matilda herself, Walsh saw how the performances of her team in 2007 impacted the growth of football in this country with an explosion of women and girls taking up the sport.
A FIFA Women's World Cup on home soil could have a similar or even greater impact, creating more opportunity for players from MiniRoos and beyond.
"I think it's about growing football," she stated. "I think having a World Cup, football goes to another level."
"Can you imagine having completely full stadiums? There's been full stadiums but imagine being able to connect with different communities having a full sea of blue for Japan up against the canary yellow of Australia and filling out these stadiums. It really just excites me."
For many national team players, their journeys started at the MiniRoos age group where a spark ignited their love of the game.
For a generation of players, that spark could be a FIFA Women's World Cup here in Australia and New Zealand in 2023.
Help us bring the FIFA Women's World Cup to Australia and New Zealand by signing up as a supporter.