In news out of South Australia this morning, the Advertiser is reporting that the city of Adelaide will not be involved in Australia’s bid to host the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
The South Australian government has reportedly written to the FFA, informing them of their desire to be left out.
FRONT PAGE of today's The Advertiser: Adelaide will not join a bid to host the 2023 FIFA women’s World Cup – because Hindmarsh Stadium is too small and using Adelaide Oval would disrupt the AFL. Extremely disappointing. ⚽️⚽️🥊
Good work @paulstarick https://t.co/n6dz6TfM6l
— Val Migliaccio (@Val61) August 5, 2019
Had the City of Churches participated, it was anticipated that Hindmarsh Stadium, home venue of A-League outfit Adelaide United would be the ground used.
There were plans to try and use the much larger Adelaide Oval, but talks quickly broke down due to what would be a near two month long clash with the AFL.
Having to play both the Adelaide Crows and the Port Adelaide Power interstate for nearly eight weeks would come at a serious cost to the AFL, one which they’re clearly not willing to risk.
Despite South Australia’s previous willingness to be involved in junior sport, especially on the women’s side, this seems to be a step backwards, given how this year’s tournament is still fresh in our minds.
The issue has now become political, with SA Opposition Leader Peter Malinauskas claiming that the current government’s lack of desire to take part in this tournament will hurt them in the long run.
“It would seem peculiar that the State Government is pursuing the Commonwealth Games but apparently doesn’t have the ability to host a women’s World Cup game,” Mr Malinauskas said when speaking to the Advertiser.
Furthermore, the decision from the SA government seems to have been based mostly on the premise that Hindmarsh would not be a suitable enough location.
This seems extremely bizarre given that matches at this year’s tournament were held at similarly low capacity venues.
Hindmarsh holds a modest 16,500 fans, whilst French stadium Stade des Alpes in Grenoble also holds less than 20,000. A round of 16 match between Germany and Nigeria was held at this stadium, despite its small capacity.
What are your thoughts on this decision from the SA government? Join in the conversation on Twitter @Soccersceneau