Women’s dream a reality for United

Western United will have a women's A-League team in 2022-23. (Supplied)

Tara Murray

Western United’s vision for a female team in the A-League Women’s competition is a reality with the side being granted a license.

United announced on Thursday that it had been granted a licence to compete in the 2022-23 season.

The club has done a mountain of work the last couple of years on its female program, including having a development squad.

Western United chairman Jason Sourasis said this was a special day for female soccer in Melbourne’s west.

“This is a special day in the history of our club,” he said. “This is one of those days that will stick out on the timeline when you look back 10, 20, 30 years from now.

“To be a truly equal, inclusive club and to represent all people in the west, it was a non-negotiable from the start that Western United needed to have a women’s team.

“Everyone at the club is excited about this next step in our journey and we are all committed to bringing success on the pitch with our women’s pathway.”

United chief executive Chris Pehlivanis said this was another step in the club’s continued ambition to grow the game for all people in the west.

He said there were a lot of people who had worked tirelessly to be ready for this moment.

“We dream big for our people in the west and we want to unite the west through football,” he said. “That is exactly what we’re doing by opening up opportunities for women to shine in an elite sporting environment at Western United.

“I’m so excited to see our girls representing Western United and witness all of the subsequent milestones that we will be able to celebrate.”

Western United women’s football integration manager Amanda Stella said this moment has been a long time coming with the work the Club has done in partnership with Calder United.

Stella is also president of Calder United, the only National Premier League Women’s side in the west.

“It’s been a long journey but one that I am so proud to have been a part of, and now I am just so happy that we finally have this opportunity that we can give to our girls of the west,” she said.

“To have young girls of the west with something to aspire to, role models to look up to and a distinct pathway to map out for their own journeys is what we’ve been striving to achieve.

“The opportunity to be part of the United family from an early age and progress through girls community and NPL teams in the hope to play A-League Women’s all within the one family is now a reality.”