His views were echoed by Rado Vidosic, coach of Melbourne City’s trailblazing womens set-up, who called for not just more money for players but better infrastructure, a longer season, more games and perhaps a even second division in the W-League.
The recent pay parity deal which puts the Matildas and Socceroos on an equal footing has also been a driver for the changing attitude to the womens game, as has the popularity of the Matildas, who can lay claim to being one of, it not the, most popular national teams in the country.
Women’s Football council chair Ros Moriarty said: “The business case plan will be a world-leading approach and will be informed by global strategy from organisations including FIFA, UEFA [the European soccer governing body], the FA [England’s controlling body] and CONCACAF [the organisation which overseas the game in Central and North America].
“The world is showing us that women’s football is more than sport, football has the power to strongly impact social agency for women.”
“The recent Matildas-Socceroos parity deal is genuine structural change at the top of the game. We now need everyone involved in Australian football to take that mentality to the game at every level, to drive ground-up equality in football for women and girls.
“The escalating global power of women’s football is seeing rapidly rising investment and performance in Britain, Europe and the USA. To keep pace, the council has identified and acted on the need for an innovative, time-lined, evidence-driven and data-backed plan with an ambitious funding rationale for growth.”
In a statement, FFA chairman Chris Nikou, said: “This business case plan will demonstrate how serious Australia is about sustainably growing participation by women and girls in football.
“It is no secret internationally that women’s football represents very significant value for the game, and this plan is an important legacy piece for our 2023 Women’s World Cup Bid.”
The women’s council plans to involve the FFA, the PFA, the game’s state Member Federations and other key stakeholders.
FFA’s head of game development Sarah Walsh said: “The new collective bargaining agreement for the Socceroos and the Matildas, which delivers equal pay for men and women playing for Australia, is a perfect example of what can be achieved with such whole of game leadership.”