Saturday, 1st April marks Football NSW’s official start to the 2023 community football season and registrations have already ensured it will be a record-breaking year of participation.
In what will be one of the biggest years for the sport in Australia, Football NSW has already recorded a record number of junior participants (5- to 12-year-olds) as the countdown to the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™ (FWWC2023) continues.
With late registrations still coming in, Football NSW boasts a 6% growth on top of 2022’s junior community playing numbers, with over 96,500 signed up with their local clubs across Sydney metropolitan.
Football NSW CEO John Tsatsimas was delighted with registrations thus far.
“Following three challenging seasons, we are thrilled to see so many juniors signing up in 2023,” he said.
“Seeing our community players, of all ages and abilities, out on the football fields every weekend is at the core of what we do, and I cannot wait to see the season get underway.
“Thank you to all the club volunteers and Association administrators who play a crucial role in facilitating the growth within our sport and I wish all our participants the best for the season ahead.”
With numbers already looking positive, Football NSW is bracing for an acceleration of growth ahead of the FWWC2023, with modified, social formats of the game as well as female football programs being available to register for during the international event.
Football NSW’s Head of Women’s Football, Hayley Todd, was looking forward to the continued growth within the game.
“2023 will be a landmark year for the growth and development of our game and, in particular, for female football,” she said.
“Through the ongoing rollout of the NSW Football Legacy Program, we’ve been able to significantly increase support for Clubs and Associations to ensure they can effectively cater for the growth ahead.
“Together with Football Australia, we are committed to making all areas of the game sustainable as we continue to move towards gender parity in football.”
In early 2023, $3.15 million was invested in infrastructure projects and female participation projects across the state in Round 1 of the Legacy Fund. Meanwhile, over 130 female scholarships have been provided across various non-player roles and Football NSW continues to expand a range of programs including Girls Love Football, Kick-On for Women, and the Daughters and Dads Active Empowerment Program.
Supported by the NSW Government, Football NSW will continue the rollout of the $10 million Legacy Program throughout 2023 and into 2024.
Opportunities to play, coach, referee or volunteer are still available via Play Football, contact your local Association for more information.
For more information about the opportunities, scholarships and grants being rolled out across the female football space, visit the NSW Football Legacy Program page.