Football Federation Australia (FFA) and New Zealand Football (NZF) are delighted their ground-breaking vision to host the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 will be realised after being awarded the hosting rights by FIFA.

FFA and NZF would like to thank the FIFA Council for their landmark decision, which will see the two countries host a tournament of firsts ─ the first co-Confederation hosted FIFA World Cup, the first FIFA Women’s World Cup to be held in the Asia-Pacific region, and the first to be held in the southern hemisphere.

A player-centric tournament, Australia-New Zealand promises to deliver record-breaking crowds and long-term participation growth, bringing football together As One to celebrate the women’s game.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino confirmed the Australia-New Zealand bid received 22 of the 35 ballots cast at a FIFA Council meeting held via videoconference on Friday morning (NZT) with the Colombian Football Association having obtained 13 votes. Japan were also in the running to host the tournament but withdrew their bid earlier this week to support the Australia-New Zealand proposal.

OFC General Secretary Franck Castillo said this event would serve as a landmark moment for the women’s game.

“Hosting the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2023 will not only have a positive impact on women’s football throughout the region but it will be a boost for football in Oceania,” he said.

“This will contribute to building our legacy for all Pacific countries as we will be showcasing Oceania on the world stage with the full support of OFC’s Executive Committee.

“This tournament will set the tone for encouraging more women to be involved in football at administration and management level, as well as playing the game.”

FFA and NZF would also like to thank the Australian and New Zealand governments, Matildas and Football Ferns fans and the entire football family who have supported the bid from the outset, as well as the bidding team who worked tirelessly to develop a bid that will unlock the untapped football potential of the Asia-Pacific region.

New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said: 

“We are honoured to have been selected as hosts for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. It will be a historic tournament of firsts that will create a profound and enduring legacy for women’s football in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. We are looking forward to delivering the best ever FIFA Women’s World Cup in both nations, one that will elevate the women’s game and inspire women and girls around the world.”

NZF President and FIFA Council Member, Johanna Wood, believed Australia-New Zealand would deliver a tournament the likes of which had not been seen before.

“Australia and New Zealand will not only host a FIFA Women’s World Cup that is the largest tournament ever run, but it will also be a catalyst for ensuring the development of women’s football continues in the Asia-Pacific region and globally,” Wood said.

“Our two nations have worked together to deliver an exceptional, historic bid and I would like to thank FIFA and the whole football family for giving us this opportunity. The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 will bring us all together in a celebration of our shared love of football.”

FFA President, Chris Nikou, believes FFA and NZF’s unique geographical location was a key strength for the successful bid.

“The FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 in Australia and New Zealand will be ground-breaking in many ways. 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,” Nikou said.

“We would like to thank FIFA, the Asian Football Confederation, Oceania Football Confederation, the Australian and New Zealand governments and all those who have supported the bid.”

Matildas captain, Sam Kerr, believed a home FIFA Women’s World Cup would be an opportunity to inspire a new generation of young Matildas to play football:

“The opportunity to play in a home FIFA Women’s World Cup is something every footballer dreams of and I am looking forward to seeing those dreams come true. Playing for the Matildas in Australia will be the highlight of my career and an opportunity to inspire girls, both in Australia and New Zealand, and all over the world to play football. We have seen great progress in the women’s game and Australia-New Zealand will take the game to a whole new level.”

Football Ferns captain, Ali Riley, said placing players’ needs firsts would produce great benefits for the tournament:

“As players, we have been in close contact with both FFA and NZF to develop a tournament which will enable players to deliver their very best on the field. To lead the Football Ferns in a home FIFA Women’s World Cup in New Zealand will be truly special and inspire a new generation of Football Ferns.”

Courtesy of New Zealand Football