The United For Macarthur and South-West Sydney FC A-League bids officially joined forces today to form a united bid representing the broader region’s community.
The combined strength and unity ensures the entire South-West of Sydney will put its best foot forward when applying for a licence to join the A-League from 2019.
“We’re stronger together,” a delighted United For Macarthur Bid Chairman Chris Redman said.
“This is a win for the broader region’s community. We’re one voice now.
“Both bids from this region were very strong and unity is important as we try to deliver an A-League club for our wonderful and vast region. So, we believe a joining of forces will significantly strengthen the bid.
“One bid, one focus, one club representing the entire community makes sense. We’re stronger together and we’re all delighted with this outcome.”
The combined bid ambassadors are both local heroes and former Socceroos.
Brett Emerton (pictured right) represented Australia at two World Cups and earned 95 caps for his nation. He captained Australia at the 2000 Olympics and was on the radar of Manchester United before a move to Dutch giants Feyenoord propelled him to the English Premier League with Blackburn Rovers.
There he made almost 250 appearances over almost a decade with the club. The powerful attacker returned to play in the A-League with Sydney FC before retiring in 2014.
Nick Carle (pictured left) had a stellar professional career. Famously debuting in the NSL at just 15 years of age, the classy playmaker enjoyed stints in France, Turkey, UAE and in England with Bristol City and Crystal Palace. The former Socceroo won the coveted 2007 Johnny Warren Medal for A-League player of the year as well as solo goal of the year, and like Emerton had a stint with Sydney FC before retiring in 2016.
Walker Corp spokesperson Chad Walker added the decision to join forces was the best possible outcome for the broader community.
“Both bids were strong in their own right. The joining of forces between United For Macarthur and South-West Sydney FC makes perfect sense for an even stronger entity. We are very supportive of this collaboration as we bid for a licence to join the A-League.
“We supported the United For Macarthur bid to ensure the community and in particular the football community in the South West had an A-League team that they could call their own, and after this announcement today we are one step closer to achieving that
“By combining the resources of both organisations into one bid, Macarthur and South-West Sydney will be well placed to secure an A-League team to play out of Campbelltown Stadium.
South-West Sydney FC Bid Chairman Gino Marra agreed that the broader community is the winner from this amalgamation.
“This is an important day for the community. We’ve come together in the spirit of unity to help bring A-League football to our region. We’re one voice, one community and one region bidding to bring football of the highest level to our part of the world.
“Now, with us joining forces together to form one bid, we’re delighted to present a united front for the whole of the Macarthur and South-West of Sydney.”
South-West Sydney FC and United For Macarthur were announced in late May as two of the 10 successful bids across Australia to progress into the final phase of A-League expansion starting in 2019.
With an estimated two million residents tipped to call the region home by 2035, the potential is clear for all to see.
There are over 24,000 registered football players male and female with over 70 clubs and more than 3600 players playing NPL football in the entire region.
The deadline for bids to be submitted for the final phase of A-League expansion is August 31, 2018.
“An A-League club would complete the pathway from grassroots to NPL and onto the elite level in the region,” added Marra.
“Two strong bids from the same region; two big local associations Southern Districts and Macarthur both backing these bids; it made sense to join forces.”
Mayor of Campbelltown, Cr George Brticevic, noted that the decision to join forces was a win for all residents of the South-West Sydney region.
“The two bids coming together presents a compelling case for the FFA and places our region in the strongest position to secure a coveted A-League license,” he said.
“By combining our strengths we will be able to ensure that everyone in this growing region has a professional sports team to call their own and throw their support behind.
“It will also create a nursery for young players across the entire Macarthur and South-West Sydney region to give them every possible opportunity to develop their talents and reach the elite level of their chosen sport without having to travel outside the region.
“I’m proud that Campbelltown Stadium will be the home for this new A-League team,” he added.