By Danielle Kutchel
W-League football is set to begin in the south east this year with several of the season’s games taking place at Dandenong City Soccer Club.
Initially the club had been slated to play the first games of the year at Dandenong, however the games were moved following damage to the local pitch.
Dates for the local games are yet to be confirmed however it kicks off a game-changing new era for soccer in the region.
It follows the signing of a Heads of Agreement with the City of Casey and the City of Greater Dandenong in December 2020 that has seen Melbourne City Football Club relocate its A-League, W-League and Academy teams to an elite training facility at Casey Fields.
At the signing on Tuesday 22 December, Mayor Angela Long was joined by Melbourne City FC W-League players Samantha Johnson and Jenna McCormick, Dandenong MP Gabrielle Williams and Cranbourne MP Pauline Richards.
Ms Williams said the relocation of the teams would be a boost for sport in the Dandenong community.
“We have one of the most multicultural populations in the country,” she said.
“One thing in common that they love is football.”
Ms Richards said it was especially exciting to see the successful Melbourne City women’s team land in the area, providing inspiration and encouragement for the next generation of female athletes.
“You are what you see, so for us to be able to have so many really extraordinary footballers there, we’re going to have so many little ones wearing the City colours,” she said.
The deal has revived talk of a new soccer stadium in Dandenong, however this was not part of the negotiations with Melbourne City.
Nevertheless, Cr Long said she hoped the team and the state government would “come to the table” to provide backing to build the long-rumoured stadium in the heart of Dandenong.
“The land is ready and waiting,” she said.
For the season fixture and to book tickets to the games, visit www.melbournecityfc.com.au