Melbourne City FC can confirm its application for entry into the Westfield W-League has been accepted by Football Federation Australia, with the Club set to field a women’s team for the first time in the 2015/16 season.
Melbourne City FC will become the W-League’s most recent expansion team, with the new team set to be based at the City Football Academy, Melbourne, where it will train on the Club’s Academy Pitches at La Trobe University.
Melbourne City FC has appointed current National Premier Leagues Head Coach Joe Montemurro as the Club’s W-League Head Coach, while the Club’s Game Development Officer and former Matilda Louisa Bisby will assume the role of Team Manager.
With the W-League commencing in September this year, Montemurro will take the reins at the conclusion of the NPL season, but will commence the recruitment process effective immediately to assemble a squad ahead of the W-League season.
Melbourne City FC CEO Scott Munn said that the Club had been in consultation with Football Federation Australia (FFA) over the past 12 months regarding the introduction of a W-League side.
“This is a very exciting moment for Melbourne City FC,” Munn said. “It has always been our ambition to have a women’s team and our acceptance into the W-League for next season is the culmination of a lot of hard work.
“Increasing women’s participation in football is vital for the game’s growth in the future and we are looking forward to our season commencing under Joe’s experienced leadership later this year.”
FFA Chief Executive Officer David Gallop welcomed the news that City will join the Westfield W-League competition from the 2015/16 season.
The continued growth of the Westfield W-League was a strategic pillar of the FFA’s Whole of Football Plan launched last week, which pointed towards a future model where all A-League clubs also had W-League teams.
“Melbourne City FC’s commitment to join the Westfield W-League for the 2015/16 season is a good step forward for the development of Women’s Football, which was identified as a key priority for the future of our game,” Gallop said.
“It is one of the first practical measures in improving elite women’s football in Australia and offers another group of talented female footballers the opportunity to develop their games and strive towards a career as a football player.
“It is also a strong commitment from one of our Hyundai A-League clubs to the Whole of Football Plan’s One Club model with the aim of one day having clubs competing in the A-League and W-League to establish strong links between men’s and women’s football.”