Five years ago, the Matildas required a discretionary grant to use the AIS facilities to prepare for the Rio Olympics.
Now, the team has its own dedicated home base at La Trobe University’s Bundoora Campus in Victoria.
Following the announcement of $12 million in the federal budget, the Victorian Government has announced the construction of the $101.1 million facility to begin in December.
In 2016, the Matildas were reliant on a grant of $300,000 from the Australian Sports Council to train before the Olympics.
The extra money allowed them to arrange five training camps and gain access to the Australian Institute of Sport.
The funding was much welcomed at the time, but was contingent on the idea that they were a medal chance. The recent influx of funding is to build for the future of the game at all levels.
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A home of their own
The new facility will have a marquee pitch with grandstand seating alongside four other pitches. A high-performance facility, recovery area, and gymnasium will be available to the players.
Rounding out the comprehensive list is a player lounge, medical centre and rehabilitation facility.
The pitches will be available to community clubs at a discounted rate. La Trobe students will have access for approximately 20 hours per week.
Football Victoria’s high-performance program to identify future stars will also be housed at the site along with an administration base.
The announcement came days after Sydney FC revealed an elite training base at Macquarie University.
Sydney’s Sky Park will host the A-League and W-League sides. This approach replicates the training facilities that have been so successful for women’s football giants like Olimpique Lyonnais in France.
Five years ago a senior Australian football team had to use their results to justify investment.
In the last five weeks, the Victorian and Federal Government along with The Commonwealth Bank have announced financial backing.
By 2023, they will have their own official home base.
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