Melbourne’s sporting heritage makes it the perfect host for the FIFA Women’s World Cup

By on July 18, 2022 0

STeph Catley says she’s seen her Arsenal team-mates get so excited about playing an international tournament at home, with Euro 2022 underway in the UK, and it excites her about the Cup FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia next year. “I can’t even imagine,” she said. “The World Cup is on such a grand scale and it’s so exciting, but to have it there, in front of family and friends and hopefully lots of sold-out stadiums full of Aussies, it’s going to be inspiring and it’s going to be great.”

Stirring up the excitement: Footballer Steph Catley (right) looks forward to Melbourne hosting the Women’s World Cup

Credit: Getty

Catley knows how great a show Australia puts on and with an incredible light show planned for launch in each host city that will celebrate the country’s diversity and unity, she says all visitors are in for a treat.

Ready for the World Cup: Melbourne – like other host cities – is gearing up to put on an incredible show

Credit: Archie Sartracom

Come play sports…


“I saw absolutely everything at the MCG,” enthuses Catley. “I’m a huge cricket fan. When I was in Australia more often, my brother and I had a Boxing Day tradition – we went to the Boxing Day Test together. When you’re in there, it feels like you’re in a coliseum. It’s always crowded, always in the summer and you can just sit back, relax and play sports in one of the most iconic stadiums in Australia and the world. This is one of my favorite places in Melbourne.

Melbourne Rectangular Stadium

“I know the stadium very well – it’s my home stadium,” Catley said. “I played there a lot during my W-League campaigns [now the A-League Women], and won a few Grand Finals there. I watched a lot of football there and also played there a few times with the Matildas.

The heart of the sport: Richmond’s AAMI Park stadium has hosted countless high-level tournaments

Credit: Visit Victoria

“It fits perfectly with the Richmond area of ​​Melbourne, where you have the MCG, Docklands is not far away and there is the Melbourne Arena, where the Australian Open takes place. This area of ​​Melbourne is the heart of all sport.

The Australian Open

“I’ve been to the Australian Open many times. It’s one of my favorite events. It’s so much fun and a great start to the sporting year. You get so many different types of people different through the gates of Melbourne. You get all the activities and food trucks and live music – it’s definitely a fun time of year. Its nickname, ‘the Happy Slam’, sums it all up. There are the better vibes as soon as you walk through the door.

Stay for…

Federation Square

“Last time I was in Melbourne at Federation Square there was an outdoor art festival. If I’m ever bored and need something to do, there’s always something going on. cool thing there,” Catley says.

Something for everyone: With its outdoor art festivals and events, Federation Square is always a fun place to visit

Credit: Visit Victoria

There’s the NGV (the world’s first major gallery devoted exclusively to Australian art), the ACMI (Australian National Museum of Screen Culture) and the Koorie Heritage Trust where you can learn all about Australia aboriginal. Fed Square also has some of the best restaurants and bars in Melbourne, including Chocolate Buddha (Asian cuisine), Taxi Kitchen (offering some of the best views over the city) and Beer Deluxe (offering awesome beer, but also amazing steaks too).

Foodie heaven: Melbourne’s food scene is thriving and visitors will be spoiled for choice

Credit: Visit Victoria

“I’m a foodie, so I love visiting different cafes and restaurants and trying different places,” says Catley. “There are so many different pockets in Melbourne where you can just get amazing food, coffee and wine, so that’s where you’ll find me on a day off when I’m not training – I usually do something to do with the food.”

The beach at sunset

“I guess it’s a bit different, but I really like it in St Kilda. On Acland Street there are a ton of cool little bars and cafes, then you walk in that direction and you’re on the water , you’re at the beach. If you’re there for the sunset, it’s really beautiful. It’s nice to have that bit of water and also the town right there.

The Great Ocean Road

Stunning vistas: get out of the city and enjoy breathtaking scenery along the Great Ocean Road

Simply rent a car and drive away from the city on the Great Ocean Road or take a guided tour to marvel at the 12 Apostles, the extraordinary stone pillars that jut out from the Southern Ocean. Also nearby are the beautiful Loch Ard Gorge, which has its own fascinating history, Port Campbell, London Bridge and the rainforest of Great Otway National Park.

Yarra Valley

Within two or three hours’ drive from Melbourne, you can be in the Yarra Valley and Mornington Peninsula. The wine on offer in the Yarra Valley is out of this world while the galleries and spas of the Mornington Peninsula make for a truly relaxing getaway. And while you’re in the area, there’s plenty of wildlife to see, too – penguins on Phillip Island, dolphins on the Bellarine Peninsula or kangaroos hopping around the Grampians.

So much to see and do: Melbourne is sports mad, but there are plenty of other attractions to keep visitors happy

Credit: Visit Victoria

One more year

AAMI Park is one of the host venues for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 which kicks off on July 20 next year with matches on:

  • Fri 21 July
  • mon 24 july
  • mon 31 july
  • Wednesday August 2
  • Sun. August 6 (second round)

International women’s football seeks to go beyond greatness™, paving the way for female empowerment.

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