All W-League games broadcast as Canberra vow to spend $350k salary cap
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All W-League games broadcast as Canberra vow to spend $350k salary cap

All W-League game will be broadcast this season in a massive step forward for the women's game and Canberra United will feature in three stand-alone Thursday night matches.

Every match will be broadcast or streamed on Fox Sports, or on SBS, with games also available to the United States and United Kingdom markets.

The W-League salary cap has risen to $350,000 this season.

The W-League salary cap has risen to $350,000 this season.

Photo: Rohan Thomson

Canberra kicks off its season against reigning champions Melbourne City at McKellar Park on October 28 and play their first Thursday night match in round four against Adelaide United.

The broadcast deal takes the W-League back up the pecking order in Australian women's sport and Canberra coach Heather Garriock said it was a huge win for the game.

"I’m super excited because it shows how far the women’s game has come, to have a stand-alone game every Thursday is huge, and it’s very much emphasised by Football Federation Australia that it’s going to be the night of women’s football," Garriock said.

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"I know people will look forward to it and it shows how great our brand has grown over the last couple of years, especially with the Matildas success.

"It just just goes to show how serious we are about growing our brand of football. Especially women’s football in Australia, it’s great to see."

In another boost for the W-League, the salary cap has been bumped by 16 per cent to $350,000 and the minimum contract has risen to $12,287.

It means players will receive an approximate average of $17,500 for the four-month season and Garriock has vowed to spend the entire cap.

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Canberra midfielder Karly Roestbakken re-signed with the club this week and said the pay rise and broadcast deal were great for the game.

"There has been a slight increase [over the years] in how many games they televise but this season it's going to be a lot more which is very good for us," Roestbakken said.

"It creates that excitement and rush when you go out on the field you know you’re being televised and there a lot of people watching you, it creates a whole new level of excitement.

"Any exposure is great so it’ll get a lot more people on board with female football and show what woman can do. It shows how far female football has come and grown and over the past few years."

The W-League season begins with a Sydney derby on October 25 and there will be 15 A-League double-headers.

Melbourne City will start favourites to win their fourth consecutive title, in a grand final to be played on February 16 or 17.

Head of W-League Greg O'Rourke said the the broadcast will be a real game-changer for the women's league.

"It is our desire to make the W-League the football league of choice for the best female footballers in the world and football fans," said O'Rourke.

"With the FIFA Women's World Cup being held in France next year, all players, Australian and International, will be looking to impress in the lead up to the tournament and our expectations are that the on-field quality will continue to deliver thrilling moments for the fans.

"I am confident that this season of the Westfield W-League is set to be one of the best."

United will host its round 12 clash against Melbourne Victory at Seiffert Oval in Queanbeyan. The league will break for the Matildas' two matches against Chile, staged in Penrith and Newcastle, in November.

- with AAP

CANBERRA UNITED DRAW (home games in bold)

October 28: Canberra United v Melbourne City at McKellar, 4pm

November 4: Canberra United v Perth Glory at McKellar, 4pm

November 17: Canberra United v Newcastle Jets at Newcastle, 7.30pm

November 22: Adelaide United v Canberra United at Coopers Stadium, 7.30pm

December 2: Canberra United v Sydney FC at McKellar, 4pm

December 7: Canberra United v Western Sydney Wanderers at Spotless Stadium, 5.20pm

December 22: Canberra United v Melbourne City at AAMI Park, 5pm

December 27: Canberra United v Brisbane Roar at McKellar, 7.30pm

January 3: Canberra United v Perth Glory at Dorrien Gardens, 8.30pm

January 13: Canberra United v Adelaide United at McKellar Park, 4pm

January 17: Canberra united v Melbourne Victory at Seiffert Oval, 7.30pm

January 25: Canberra United v Brisbane Roar at Suncorp Stadium, 5.20pm

February 9-10: Semi-finals

February 16-17: Grand final