The NSW Institute of Sport has re-committed its support to the Future Matildas program initiative following the successful completion of the 2018 pilot program.
Run in partnership with the NSW Government, Football Federation Australia (FFA) and Football NSW, the program was created to help bridge the gap between current and future generations of Westfield Matildas, and will now benefit from increased NSWIS contributions.
The Institute has committed to investing $90,000 per year up until 2020, helping to ensure the continued development of Australia’s next generation of elite female footballers.
NSWIS CEO Professor Kevin Thompson was thrilled with the Program’s success thus far and its potential moving forward.
“In its first year of operation, we have already seen Future Matildas developing rapidly into athletes ready to represent Australia on the world stage”, Thompson said.
“It is with a great deal of pride that NSWIS is able to commit to the program over a longer term, helping to ensure the athletes are supported by world class coaching and support staff, facilities and equipment in a professional and competitive training environment.”
In 2018, four Future Matildas scholarship holders went on to be selected into the Matildas squad, with Mary Fowler and Amy Sayer making their international debuts. Meanwhile, nine current Westfield Matildas utilised the program through the year for training or competitive matches, highlighting the initiative’s added value in supporting the Australian Football Team ahead of the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
Following the release of the NSW Government’s Her Sport Her Way strategy, Minister for Sport Stuart Ayres saw the Program as a great illustration of the positive progress being made across the industry.
“One of the key objectives of the strategy is to provide pathways for continued female participation in sport,” he said.
“The Future Matildas program provides a crucial avenue for talented young footballers to continue their development in the sport and help them make the leap to one day representing the Matildas.”
“NSWIS are known for their world class expertise across elite sport programs and we’re excited to be working alongside them to provide enhanced support for this wonderful initiative.”
Football Federation Australia Chief Executive Officer, Mr David Gallop AM, acknowledged NSWIS and the NSW Government’s enhanced support of the program.
“The Future Matildas program has already made a big impact for many emerging and established female footballers, and we are delighted that NSWIS and the NSW Government have increased their investment in the program following the strong start,” Gallop said.
“The Future Matildas program is a great example as to what can be achieved when everyone pulls in the same direction, and FFA is certainly appreciative of the support NSWIS, the NSW Government, and Football NSW in making it a reality.
“The program’s second year will kick off following the conclusion of the current Westfield W-League season and will play a vital role in helping many players to prepare for next year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in France,” he said.