Australia's most popular footballer, the dynamic Sam Kerr, and Newcastle's own Emily van Egmond, are bringing their Matildas teammates back to Newcastle for a clash against Chile in November.
After wowing Novocastrian football fans with a 3-2 win over Brazil almost 12 months ago, the Westfield Matildas will take on sister 2019 World Cup qualifiers Chile at McDonald Jones Stadium on Tuesday 13 November.
Newcastle was selected by Football Federation Australia after a bid by Venues NSW with financial support from City of Newcastle.
Sam Kerr (left) and midfielder Chloe Logarzo.
The night time Test will be the second of a two-match "Seven Consulting International Series", following the first in Penrith on Saturday 10 November.
"I'm thrilled to welcome the Matildas back to Australia’s hottest sporting city," Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said at today's announcement at McDonald Jones.
"Last year's Matildas game against Brazil saw Novocastrians turn out in their thousands to set an Australian crowd record for a women’s soccer match.
"The game was memorable not just because it attracted a crowd of almost 17,000 people, but because of Sam Kerr’s incredible back-flip goal celebration.
“Almost 15,000 Chileans live in Sydney and we will be working hard to attract them to Newcastle to watch their national team, hopefully with many staying on in Newcastle for a mid-week holiday.
"The Brazil Test generated half a million dollars for the city via 330 bed nights, so we're delighted to help bring the Matildas back on behalf of the City. We know the people of Newcastle want big events.
"We're renowned for hosting both national and international sporting events including the Asian Cup Football tournament, The Newcastle 500 Supercars, and most recently the A-League Grand Final, plus rugby and rugby league Test Matches."
Westfield Matildas Head Coach Alen Stajcic will use the two matches as part of his team’s preparation for the FIFA Women’s World Cup in France in June next year.
“Chile are an emerging nation in international women’s football and have qualified for next year’s FIFA Women’s World cup for the first time in their history,” he said.
"They (Chile) had a fantastic Copa America this year and have showed a great level of technical proficiency, as we would expect from a proud South American footballing nation.
“For us to prepare for the FIFA Women’s World Cup we need to play against a diverse range of opposition and Chile will be great challenge for us.
“The atmosphere at our matches in Penrith and Newcastle last year was amazing and I know that the players are looking forward to running out in front of large, vocal home crowds."
The Matildas’ Sam Kerr is undoubtedly the world’s most popular women’s footballer. The athletic Perth Glory forward is the most popular current footballer among Aussie fans, including players of both sexes from the Hyundai A-League and Westfield W-league.
A two-time Football Media Association International Player of the Year and 2018 Young Australian of the Year, Kerr bagged a brace and set up a third goal in the comeback win over Brazil last September to clean sweep the two-match series.
Hunter residents will also get to see Newcastle-raised van Egmond turn out in the midfield for the Matildas.
Van Egmond's father, Gary, a former Socceroo and Jets coach, is the team's assistant coach.
City of Newcastle actively promotes Women's Sport and is a proud sponsoring partner of the Newcastle Jets Westfield W-League team.