Western United’s football-specific facility is a milestone worth celebrating

10 April, 2024

Bottom club Western United’s 4-2 win over Macarthur was a rare bright spark in a season in which just about everything has gone wrong in the A-League Men.

More than three years after they were first supposed to move into their own football-specific stadium, the team from Melbourne’s west finally played a game on their own patch of turf.

It may only have been at their training ground – which the green-and-blacks plan to use as their temporary home ground until Wyndham City Stadium is finally built – but the 3430 fans who turned up in Tarneit were rewarded with a piece of A-League history.

It was an exhilarating encounter made all the more watchable by the fact the pitch wasn’t cut up and blighted by line markings from rival codes. Which makes the news that cash-strapped Super Rugby side Melbourne Rebels are looking to ground-share with Western United all the more frustrating.

No one wants to see sporting teams go out of business. That’s exactly what the Australian Professional Leagues are currently battling against. But just when an A-League club finally gets its own facility, next minute comes the announcement they’ll probably have to share it with a rival code.

Sporting administrators in Australia just cannot seem to fathom that football needs a pristine playing surface compared to the rival rugby codes. At least Western United finally have a home ground – of sorts. It isn’t exactly the stadium they promised when they first joined the league back in 2019.

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But as we’ve been reminded countless times this season, the football landscape has changed. The Wyndham Regional Football Facility is something worth celebrating. Now we just need the league to hold on long enough for Western United to build the stadium they intended.

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