Federal Member for Chifley Ed Husic has welcomed the announcement today by the Prime Minister and Football Federation Australia (FFA) CEO Ben Buckley that a Western Sydney Team will enter the A-League next season.
As the FFA ramps up its preparations for the Western Sydney A-League team, the Prime Minister has announced today a special $5 million program to help lift grassroots participation in the game.
Mr Husic, a patron of the Mt Druitt Rangers Football Club, spoke in Federal Parliament last month about the need for an A-League presence in Western Sydney.
“This is a terrific day for Western Sydney football,” Mr Husic said.
“The really special aspect about today’s announcement is that it opens doors and opportunities for the next generation of young football players in Western Sydney.
“Every weekend thousands of people, of all ages, are playing football across Western Sydney.
“They love the game, they’re supported by scores of volunteers who ensure football clubs can thrive – now they have their very own Western Sydney A-League team.
“The new team – working hand in hand with the Federal Government’s grassroots football funding and almost 60,000 Western Sydney players already involved in the sport – will provide a tremendous boost to the profile of football in the region.
“There are around half a dozen football clubs that play in and around the Chifley electorate and football continues to prove very popular particularly among junior players.
“The Federal Government funding will provide avenues for boys and girls to get involved in the sport, keep active and potentially take their involvement to a higher level.
“The Gillard Government has a strong commitment to grassroots sport and today’s announcement is further evidence of this.”
“I’m also delighted to see the support we’ll provide to the women’s competition, which has seen the likes of our own Kyah Simon represent our nation.
“Western Sydney has proven to be fertile ground for football with the likes of Kewell, Schwarzer, Emerton, Holman, Brosque, Cahill and Culina all hailing from the region.
“With the right support and encouragement, we can provide a platform for young people in our region to get a powerful head start playing the ‘beautiful game’ – and possibly do us proud on the world stage too.”
Mr Husic’s speech to Parliament can be found here.