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Commonwealth Bank agree naming rights deal with Venues NSW for home of Western Sydney Wanderers

Western Sydney Wanderers will have a new home – in name at least – for the 2021/22 A-League season.

The Bankwest Stadium will become CommBank Stadium as of October 1, as confirmed in an announcement by the Commonwealth Bank today.

The name change is the result of an agreement between the bank – which is also the naming rights partner of the Matildas – and Venues NSW, which was announced in a media release by Commonwealth Bank.

“CommBank has expanded its support for Western Sydney to help the region recover and re-build after being one of the hardest hit in the country with COVID-19 lock-downs,” the announcement reads.

“As part of its expanded commitment, the bank has today announced two significant investments, a multi-year partnership for a Western Sydney landmark and funding to help local small businesses with the opportunity to connect with more customers.

“The multi-year partnership with Venues NSW is for the naming-rights of Western Sydney Stadium. Bankwest Stadium will officially become known as CommBank Stadium from Friday 1 October. Located in the heart of Parramatta, the 30,000-seat stadium has firmly established itself as an iconic and critical piece of community infrastructure for sport and entertainment, as well as for diverse business, cultural and community events.”

As part of the announcement, Commonwealth Bank also confirmed a $120,000 investment to help small businesses in Western Sydney.

“Western Sydney is one of fastest growing regions in the country, and a key engine room for the national economy,” Commonwealth Bank CEO Matt Comyn said in the statement.

“We know the area has been hit hard by the recent COVID-19 restrictions and we’re committed to investing in Western Sydney to help businesses get back on their feet and re-build after an incredibly challenging 2021.”

Matthew Galea is a sports journalist with Soccerscene. He reports widely on football policy and industry matters, drawing on his knowledge and passion of the game.

LaLiga initiative to support grassroots football worldwide

LaLiga

LaLiga has announced the launch of LaLiga Grassroots, in a bid to further advance and improve its bespoke sports and training projects, as well as promote LaLiga’s know-how and methodology.

This initiative is part of a series of international sports projects that LaLiga have been running since 2015 across multiple markets, and its most outstanding new feature is a series of programmes which are set to take place in Spain. The programmes will mainly be held at ESC Madrid, regarded as a state-of-the-art and world-beating sports complex.

Juan Florit, head of LaLiga Sports Projects, will be in charge of the technical and sports side of LaLiga Grassroots.

“LaLiga Grassroots was conceived as a new specialised unit conceived by the Sports Projects team and the International Business and Development team,” Florit said.

“Our activities will mainly focus on the holistic development of young players, international training programmes for professionals in the sector, and projects to promote and support LaLiga clubs when it comes to their academies and running international tournaments.”

This new project represents a further step in LaLiga’s creation and execution of sports projects, an area through which it has enjoyed great success over the last six seasons.

The project is set to find positions for nearly 750 Spanish coaches, as well as provide training for more than 20,000 coaches and 175,000 players in the more than 400 projects carried out across 38 countries.

Javier Hernandez, Head of Business and International Development for the project, was excited to see LaLiga Grassroots finally launched.

“The work we’ve carried out over the years in training players and coaches internationally has taken things to the next level, not only for those who have worked with LaLiga, but also for the league itself and its clubs,” he said.

“We’re convinced that now, with the creation of LaLiga Grassroots and the new programmes that we’ll be running at the ESC Madrid Center, we’ll be able to create better opportunities for everyone.”

Football West CEO James Curtis steps down to usher in new leadership

Football West

Football West have announced that James Curtis will be stepping down from his position as Chief Executive Officer, after more than five years in the role. As he makes his transition, Football West have now commenced their succession planning.

The decision taken by Curtis reaffirms Football West’s dedication as an organisation to fostering long-term growth through the benefits provided by leadership succession.

Football West Chairman Sherif Andrawes praised Curtis’ strong leadership and commitment to delivering a long-term legacy for football in Western Australia, since commencing in the role in 2016.

“James has been an outstanding CEO and his focus on driving long-term growth, investment and community benefit have contributed to a bright future for football,” Andrawes said.

“His commitment to working with all parts of the WA community and government to engage with football and being a leader driving diversity, inclusion and engagement has ensured football is positioned well for the future of the game.

“With significant achievements including funding for the long-awaited WA State Football Centre, securing the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in WA and establishing the Football Futures Foundation, there have been many successes during his tenure.”

Curtis conveyed that it was the right time to step down from the role and to transition leadership, with Football West strongly positioned for leveraging record growth.

“We have built a great team across Western Australia that is well positioned to continue building on our strong foundations. After more than five years in the position and rebuilding from the impact of COVID-19, we are ready for a new CEO to implement and deliver our future strategy,” Curtis said.

“I have enjoyed working closely with our Board and our valued partners across government, corporate and the football community to deliver major milestones for the game in WA and establish strong partnerships across Asia for WA football.

“We have a vibrant and passionate football community that will continue to grow on the back of strong clubs and volunteers and our dedicated Football West team.”

Curtis will continue his involvement with football as a Non-Executive Director of Football Futures Foundation – which is chaired by Nick Tana, and supporting the transition to find the new CEO.

Football West has commenced an internal and external search for the company’s next CEO.

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