Lack of adequate facilities could cost MidCoast Council the opportunity to host an international squad during the women's football World Cup to be played in Australia and New Zealand in 2023.
Football Mid North Coast (FMNC) chairman Mike Parsons expects teams would be based in regional areas for the duration of the cup, as was the case with the men's Asian Cup when it was played in Australia in 2015.
"There will be 32 countries involved. Australia and New Zealand will be two, but that still leaves 30 looking for a base in either Australia or New Zealand,'' Mr Parsons said.
"Regional areas with the adequate facilities, easy access to an airport and who put together a business plan would all be in the running (to host a team).''
It's understood that Port Macquarie-Hastings Council would be applying to host a team,
However MidCoast Council's comparative lack of facilities would be a major drawback, although Mr Parsons said there is still some time.
"If we had a benefactor who provided us with some land and some money then something could be achieved,'' he said.
Mr Parsons added that the facility wouldn't have to be purpose-built for the World Cup. Other sports would benefit.
"It would be a lasting community asset,'' he said.
"Improving sporting facilities here is something that I've been pushing and I'll continue to do so,'' he added. (Mr Parsons lives in Taree).
Mr Parsons admits to some surprise that the Australian/New Zealand bid was successful.
"But this is a massive shot in the arm for the country and the economy and very positive for the community,'' he added.
"The women's World Cup is one of the top three or four sporting events in the world.
"Obviously we don't know what will be happening with COVID-19 then. But there will be people travelling here from around the globe for the World Cup.''
Mr Parsons said there is also the opportunity for the public to apply to be volunteers for the World Cup as he did for the Asian Cup. An added bonus for this area is that the McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle is expected to host some World Cup matches.
Mr Parsons said the fact that Australia is a legitimate chance of winning the World Cup is another reason to look forward to 2023.
"The Matildas were a bit unlucky in the last World Cup in France and also the one before that,'' he said.
"For Australia to win the World Cup on our own soil ... it would be massive.''
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