Valentine Sports Park was hit with Matildas fever as the national team descended at the newly re-developed Football NSW facility for a week long training camp.
Currently ranked tenth in the FIFA World Rankings, the Matildas became the first national team to hold a camp at the new facility and utilised one of the two state of the art artificial surfaces currently on show at Glenwood.
Coach Alen Stajic put the squad through their paces as the camp continued its preparation for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada. Wednesday evening saw his squad face PS4 NPL NSW Mens 1 Grade 15 side Marconi Stallions in a friendly encounter.
The Football NSW Institute Girls teams also joined in on the event and had their chance to meet and greet their heroes posing for photos and signing autographs in what was a memorable evening shared by all.
Football NSW’s Technical Coordinator and one of the many advocates of female football Nadine Shiels, was delighted with the presence the Matildas had towards the girls teams.
“This was a great experience for the girls as they witnessed their idols in a professional training environment preparing for a special moment.”
All of the Institute’s five teams were in attendance with many hoping they too could emulate their idols someday.
“These Institute players see themselves playing at the highest level, and to have the opportunity to witness the intensity, commitment and professionalism involved at that level is imperative,” said Shiels.
The Matildas will be competing in a Tri Series being held in Auckland, New Zealand next month between the Football Ferns (New Zealand’s women’s team) and DPR Korea.
In further preparation for the World Cup, the Matildas will then fly to Cyprus and compete in the Cyprus Cup between the 2nd and 15th of March.
The Matildas training squad:
Aivi Luik, Alanna Kennedy, Alex Chidiac, Amy Harrison, Ashleigh Sykes, Brianna Davey (gk), Caitlin Foord, Casey Dumont (gk), Clare Polkinghorne, Danielle Brogan, Elise Kellond-Knight, Ellie Brush, Emily van Egmond, Emma Checker, Hayley Crawford, Hayley Raso, Kate Gill, Katrina Gorry, Kim Carroll, Kyah Simon, Larissa Crummer, Lisa De Vanna, Marianna Tabain, Melissa Barbieri (gk), Michelle Heyman, Nicola Bolger, Nicole Begg, Servet Uzunlar, Stephanie Catley, Teigen Allen, Teresa Polias
-By Nikola Pozder