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Legacy 23 Post-Tournament Report

Australia stands at a crossroads as the sun sets on the triumphant FIFA Women's World Cup 2023. The Legacy Post-Tournament Report illuminates the strides made and the hurdles still to be overcome in women's football. The $2.9 billion gap in facility investment is a standout challenge, spotlighting an urgent need for innovative funding solutions.

 

Angel City FC in the United States emerges as a beacon of alternative funding success, challenging traditional paradigms. Founded by an impressive coalition including Julie Uhrman, Natalie Portman, and venture capitalist Kara Nortman, the club's strategy hinges on leveraging celebrity influence, strategic sponsorships, and a robust community engagement plan. This has not only filled stadiums but also secured a solid financial footing without sole reliance on government funding​​.


A recent news story from Samantha Lewis highlighted the calls made by A-League Women players for the Australian Professional Leagues (APL) to transition into a full-time competition. The players' demand for a full-time league reflects the increasing recognition and enthusiasm for women's football in Australia, especially after the Women's World Cup boom. However, the financial capability of clubs to employ players year-round remains a significant obstacle to achieving this goal. This emphasises the need for innovative funding solutions and a diverse approach to funding and support to realise the full potential of women's football in Australia. By considering this context, we can enrich the narrative and reinforce the importance of overcoming financial challenges to support women's football.

 

Australia's pursuit of hosting the AFC Women’s Asian Cup 2026 is also prime opportunity to adopt such innovative models. Drawing inspiration from Angel City FC, Australia can cultivate a football ecosystem that thrives on diversity in funding, encompassing private investments, corporate sponsorships, and community-driven initiatives. This approach addresses the immediate infrastructural needs and fosters a more sustainable and inclusive growth trajectory for the sport.

 

The discussion extends beyond the field, touching on societal impacts and the potential for football to drive positive change. The Legacy'23 strategy, securing $398 million with a significant portion impacting other sports, underscores the multifaceted benefits of investing in women's football. Emulating Angel City FC's model, where the club’s success catalyses broader social engagement and investment, can amplify these outcomes in Australia.

 

To reshape the landscape of women's football funding in Australia, stakeholders must embrace a collective and multifaceted approach. By exploring innovative funding avenues and building strategic partnerships, the sport can navigate its current financial challenges and unlock new potential. This journey, while ambitious, is essential for sustaining the momentum and ensuring that the legacy of the Women's World Cup blossoms into lasting growth and development for women's football in Australia and beyond.


You can read the entire pre and post-tournament reports here.

 



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