Australian and New Zealand's success in winning the right to host the 2013 FIFA Women's World Cup is the biggest shot in the arm for the sport since John Aloisi's famous penalty ended 32 years of Socceroos anguish in failing to qualify for the game's biggest event.
Women's football is on the up. The last iteration of the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2019 drew in a record 1.1 billion viewers. The prize money for that tournament doubled to $US30 million, up from US$15 million in 2015.
Australia has followed suit. Last year the Matildas were ranked as the country's most beloved national team in a survey conducted by True North Research. More than 50,000 fans attended the five Matildas games in Australia for 2019.
And, of course, Sam Kerr is rightly the game's most recognisable and marketable face in the country.
With hosting rights now secured, administrator's attentions will now turn to the nuts and bolts of putting together one of the world's largest sporting events, and nowhere in Australia is better placed to help play host to the event than Canberra.
Yet ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr has said the ACT will not be hosting any matches due to an asking price of more than $1 million per game, a figure that would make the games financially difficult.
It's time again to show that Canberra is a rising power in the Australian football landscape.
For the capital to be omitted as a tournament city would be a disaster.
Canberra has a strong history of support for international football events, with recent matches across the 2015 Asian Cup and Socceroos fixtures being well attended. We also have a proud focus on women's football. Canberra is the only city in Australia to have a professional women's team without a men's counterpart.
The success of two-time W-League Champions Canberra United, both on and off the pitch, underlines the city's passion for the women's game.
With the AIS and the $20 million "Home of Football" in Throsby set to be completed in 2021, Canberra has two premium venues perfectly fit to act as tournament homes to visiting teams.
Canberra's history of supporting women's football, its infrastructure, and its passionate community make it an ideal location for hosting matches.
Yet Canberrans could be forgiven for a lack in faith in the FFA's commitment to the capital.
In 2008 and 2018, two very strong bids to bring an A-League team to Canberra were spurned by football's governing body. The Socceroos fixtures granted to GIO stadium are usually early-campaign qualifiers against low level opponents.
This city deserves more respect from the game's administrators.
As a member of the 2018 A-League bid team, I was consistently blown away by this community's support for the bid. From local politicians, to businesses, grassroots football clubs and members of the public, Canberrans showed not just a willingness but a genuine desire to go above and beyond in showing their support.
More than 8000 people signed up as Foundation Members of the club, signs were displayed in shop windows, event spaces and resources were made available to the bid team free of charge, local media got behind the bid, and hundreds of football fans volunteered their time to hand out flyers and sign up members.
The city now needs to show that support again, to convince the ACT government to pull out all the stops to reopen negotiations with the FFA, and show that this city can be trusted to put on a showing one of the world's biggest sporting events deserves.
It's time again to show that Canberra is a rising power in the Australian football landscape. I encourage all fans of the game to throw their support behind the city in a bid to ensure this community takes part in one the greatest sporting events ever to take place down under.
- Aaron Walker is a member of the Canberra and Capital Region A-League Bid team.