New Zealand and Australia will host the 2023 Women’s Soccer World Cup it has been announced. The joint bid was chosen by the council of world football governing body, FIFA.
The bid seen off competition from Columbia. However, earlier in the bidding, Brazil and Japan dropped out. In the evaluation report New Zealand’s and Australia’s bid received the best score of 4.1, while Columbia’s only received a score of 2.8. The report published by FIFA also stated that the bid was the most favourable coming from a commercial perspective.
BBC Sport report it will be the first time a women’s tournament will see 32 teams, instead of the current 24 teams. Gianni Infantino, the President of FIFA said, “The bidding process was highly competitive. We would like to thank both of the bidders for their remarkable work. It was really, really well prepared”. BBC state that 22 of the 35 votes which were cast went in favour of New Zealand and Australia, while the remainder went the way of Columbia.
Infantino as well as announcing the winning bid, announced a funding boost for women’s football. He said, “We have decided to award $1bn (£805m) to the development of women’s football in the coming four years,”. He continued, “We experienced last year in France a fantastic Women’s World Cup. It broke all records. It brought women’s football to a truly global stage.”
The president of the football federation of Australia said the competition will be “ground breaking”. He said, “Not only will it be the first ever co-confederation hosted Fifa World Cup and the first ever Fifa Women’s World Cup in the Asia-Pacific region, but we will unlock the huge potential for growth in women’s football in the Asia-Pacific region.” New Zealand Football President Johanna Wood said “We believe we have been given a treasure, and we will look after that treasure.
There are 13 proposed stadiums where the two countries intend to host the games. This includes eight in Australia and five in New Zealand. BBC Sport that these stadiums are:
- Stadium Australia, Sydney (the final), capacity: 70,000
- Sydney Football Stadium, capacity: 42,512
- Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, capacity: 30,052
- Brisbane Stadium, capacity: 52,263
- Perth Rectangular Stadium, capacity: 22,225
- Hindmarsh Stadium, Adelaide, capacity: 18,435
- Newcastle Stadium, capacity: 25,945
- York Park, Launceston, Tasmania, capacity: 22,065
- Eden Park, Auckland (opening game), capacity: 48,276
- Wellington Stadium, capacity: 39,000
- Christchurch Stadium, capacity: 22,556
- Waikato Stadium, Hamilton, capacity: 25,111
- Dunedin Stadium, capacity: 28,744