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Australia and New Zealand to host Women’s World Cup of soccer

TOM SMITHIES, June 28, 2020 7:00PM The Daily Telegraph

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The Sydney Opera House was lit up with images of Matildas captain Sam Kerr and Ferns captain Ali Riley ahead of the FIFA vote that awarded the 2023 Women’s World Cup to Australia and New Zealand. Picture: Getty Images media_cameraThe Sydney Opera House was lit up with images of Matildas captain Sam Kerr and Ferns captain Ali Riley ahead of the FIFA vote that awarded the 2023 Women’s World Cup to Australia and New Zealand. Picture: Getty Images

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Celebrations have erupted* across Australia and New Zealand, with the two nations chosen as joint hosts of the Women’s World Cup of soccer in 2023.

“We did it! We are hosting the 2023 FIFAWWC!” Australia’s Matildas posted on Twitter after the announcement in the early hours of Friday, June 26.

Matildas captain Sam Kerr also couldn’t contain her glee.

“The opportunity to play in a home FIFA Women’s World Cup is something every footballer dreams of and I am looking forward to seeing those dreams come true,” the Australian superstar said.

FFA & Australian Bid Team Members Watch The 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup Host Announcement media_cameraAustralian soccer players Steph Catley, Alanna Kennedy and Lydia Williams celebrate as FIFA announces Australia and New Zealand as hosts of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Picture: Getty Images)

“Playing for the Matildas in Australia will be the highlight of my career and an opportunity to inspire girls, both in Australia and New Zealand and all over the world, to play football.

“We have seen great progress in the women’s game and Australia-New Zealand will take the game to a whole new level.”

Matildas teammate Hayley Raso said she had “goosebumps”, while Kyah Simon said it was a birthday she would never forget.

Australian sports stars dominating overseas

After three years of lobbying* across the globe, the joint Australia-New Zealand bid was announced as the winner over its only rival*, Colombia, by FIFA boss Gianni Infantino.

FIFA’s ruling council voted 22 to 13 in favour of the Australia-New Zealand bid, with only the European and South American nations backing Australia’s rival after council members watched video pitches* from the two bidders.

*** BESTPIX *** FFA & Australian Bid Team Members Watch The 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup Host Announcement media_cameraFootball Federation Australia chairman Chris Nikou, along with officials and players, react to the announcement. Picture: Getty Images

It means the countdown can begin immediately to the hosting of a sporting event watched by more than a billion people, and which promises to turbocharge* interest in women’s football across the two countries.

The announcement was celebrated by fans and players, including former Socceroos star Tim Cahill who described the win as a “proud moment” and an “amazing achievement”.

In New Zealand, Football Ferns captain Ali Riley shared an emotional photo of herself on Twitter with tears in her eyes.

“To lead the Football Ferns in a home FIFA Women’s World Cup in New Zealand will be truly special and inspire a new generation of Football Ferns,” she said.

New Zealand Footballers React To The 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup Host Announcement media_cameraNew Zealand Ferns players Annalie Longo, Hannah Wilkinson and Erin Walker toast the announcement. Picture: Getty Images

The good news came almost a decade* after Australia was humiliated in its bid to host the 2022 Men’s World Cup, when it received just one vote.

Just hours before the announcement of the Women’s World Cup hosts, the Sydney Opera House had been lit up with footage of the Matildas and the Ferns in a show of support for the bid from governments in Australia and New Zealand.

The joint Australia-New Zealand bid had been rated as clearly better by FIFA’s own experts, scoring 4.5/5 compared with 2.8/5 for Colombia.

media_cameraFIFA president Gianni Infantino poses next to the Women’s World Cup trophy after announcing Australia and New Zealand will jointly host the 2023 competition. Picture: AFP Photo/FIFA/Ben Moreau

The World Cup will take place between July 10 and August 10 in 2023 and feature 32 teams for the first time. Ticket sales of 1.5 million are predicted.

Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Newcastle and Launceston will host World Cup matches in Australia, while Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Hamilton and Dunedin will be the New Zealand host cities.

GLOSSARY

  • erupted: broken out
  • lobbying: trying to gain support
  • rival: competitor
  • video pitches: videos showing why each bid should be supported
  • turbocharge: quickly increase
  • decade: 10 years
  • humiliated: very embarrassed

EXTRA READING

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Heartbreak as Matildas crash out of 2019 World Cup

Matildas win the Cup of Nations

QUICK QUIZ

  1. Which other country was Australia and New Zealand up against in the bid to host the World Cup?
  2. What year will the World Cup be played in Australia and New Zealand?
  3. How many votes did Australia and New Zealand get?
  4. How many votes did the rival nation get?
  5. How many tickets are expected to be sold to the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand?

LISTEN TO THIS STORY

CLASSROOM ACTIVITIES
1. Five reasons why
Australian and New Zealand soccer bodies secured the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup by convincing a majority of FIFA members that we were the best choice to host the event. Create a list of your “Top 5” reasons why Australia is a worthy host of this event. Each reason should be written as a sub-heading with an accompanying paragraph to justify and elaborate on your idea.

Time: allow 45 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum Links: English; Critical and Creative Thinking

2. Extension
Let’s imagine your local group of schools is looking for a host for a “School Soccer Super Series”. With a group of 2-3 people, create a short video that showcases your school and explains why you would be worthy hosts.

Time: allow 45 minutes to complete this activity 
Curriculum Links: English; Media Arts, ICT Capability

VCOP ACTIVITY
I Spy Nouns
Nouns are places, names (of people and objects), and time (months or days of the week).

How many nouns can you find in the article?

Can you sort them into places, names and time?

Pick three nouns and add an adjective (describing word) to the nouns.

HAVE YOUR SAY: Who is your favourite sports star and why?
No one-word answers. Use full sentences to explain your thinking. No comments will be published until approved by editors.

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