Matildas news: Ange Postecoglou’s reality check after Australia’s Women’s World Cup run

Less than two short months ago, Australian football and women’s sport were both experiencing all-time highs during the Matildas’ magical run in the Women’s World Cup.

But have we heard much about either of them since?

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Some modest attempts have been made on social media to keep Matildas stars front of mind in their domestic leagues.

Australia’s sensational women’s cricket team has managed a few headlines, the AFLW has barely made a ripple and netball has drawn mostly negative headlines of late. That’s about it.

In terms of football, Ange Postecoglou is helping to produce daily content for his transformation of Tottenham in the glitz and glamour of the English Premier League.

But Postecoglou and football commentator Simon Hill both made sobering comments this week about women’s football and the game in general Down Under.

It’s unlikely many outside of true diehards would be aware the A-League Women’s competition starts this Saturday, with current champions Sydney FC among the 12 teams ready to battle it out.

Sadly, Postecoglou is positive the Matildas’ record-breaking run to a World Cup semi-final won’t have a lasting legacy on the sport in Australia.

He is speaking from experience, as he was left gutted that the Socceroos’ victory in the 2015 Asian Cup under his guidance also had little impact.

“It didn’t make an impact back there and that was kind of my frustration,” he said.

“When you look at what the Matildas did at the World Cup, unbelievable, but you still won’t see an influx of resources to the game. You won’t. I guarantee it.

“They’ll build stadiums and other codes will use them.

“I just don’t think the nation as a whole has that inside them to understand you can make an impact on the world of football, but it requires a kind of nationalistic approach that I just don’t think Australians at their core are really interested in.”

Postecoglou was speaking ahead of Australia’s clash with England in a friendly at Wembley on Saturday morning Australian time.

Postecoglou and another former Socceroos coach, Guus Hiddink, were invited into the team camp by current coach, Graham Arnold.

Englishman Hill, who has commentated on a range of Australian football matches over the past two decades, had a short, sharp summary of Postecoglou’s comments.

“Also from Ange,” Hill wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “A few brutal truth bombs in this piece. Ouch.”

“Brutal indeed,” was a reply from tennis great and sports administrator Paul McNamee. “This is a timely call to action for Aussie football, before it’s too late.”

Another X user tried to defend support for the world game, citing a massive crowd that packed Federation Square at 2am local time for the Socceroos’ clash with Denmark at the men’s World Cup last year.

“As popular as AFL, NRL, cricket or union may be in Australia, would those codes draw such a crowd at such a time?” wrote X user Matthew Collins.

But Postecoglou believes those other dominant codes are part of the reason football will never get the funding or support it needs to become a constant force.

“One of (the reasons) is obviously the sporting landscape, where there’s some pretty strong codes there that have generationally dominated the landscape,” Postecoglou said.

“There’s Aussie Rules, that’s the indigenous sport of Australia. It’s kind of unique to them and they take great pride in protecting their code. The rugby codes dominate.

“It’s very hard for football to make an impact in that space and I guess then the flipside of that is just how global the sport of football is.

“If I can compare that to a country like Japan, who also have the tyranny of distance and baseball’s pretty strong, they plant a lot of resources into football and you can see that’s making an impact.

“I don’t see Australia down that road.”

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