WELLINGTON, April 1 : New Zealand Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson and Economic Development Minister Stuart Nash Thursday welcomed confirmation New Zealand will host the opening ceremony and matches, including a semifinal, of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2023.
The tournament announced on Wednesday night nine host cities and 10 stadiums in Australia and New Zealand that will host matches.
FIFA confirmed a joint Australia-New Zealand bid to host one of the largest sports event in 2020. It will be the first-ever co-hosted FIFA Women’s World Cup and the first edition to feature 32 teams.
There was strong interest from cities on both sides of the ditch to host matches. FIFA revealed the host cities with Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Dunedin the four New Zealand cities.
“To be the nation that welcomes the world to this global event will be very special. As well as showcasing the skills of some of the best players in the world and providing great entertainment, these matches can make a positive and lasting change to the women’s game. This tournament can inspire and encourage more women to get involved as players, coaches, match officials and administrators,” Grant Robertson said.
“Using four of five possible venues gives spectators the opportunity to attend the biggest women’s sports tournament ever held here. Unfortunately, Christchurch is not able to host a match given stadium requirements. We’ll work with New Zealand Football, Football Australia, the Australian Government and FIFA to deliver an amazing event.”
The New Zealand government has set aside up to 25 million New Zealand dollars (17.5 million US dollars) to host the event, including support to run the tournament and to grow the involvement of women and girls in football.
“Confirmation of these matches, soon after we announced New Zealand will host the 8th World Conference of the International Working Group on Women in Sport (IWG) in Auckland in 2022 shows we’re making real progress in the government’s Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation Strategy,” Grant Robertson said.
The 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup will be the first cross-confederation (Asia and Oceania) tournament and the largest women’s World Cup with 32 teams.