Josh Kennedy, Elise Kellond-Knight and Emily Gielnik support the IFCPF Asian-Oceania Championships

Former Socceroo Josh Kennedy, as well as CommBank Matildas Elise Kellond-Knight and Emily Gielnik, were at the CommBank Pararoos and CommBank ParaMatildas squad announcement event at Federation Square on Monday.

They spoke about the pride of wearing the green and gold, the impact of hosting the IFCPF Asian Oceanic Championships, and implored fans to come out to support the teams at the Home of the Matildas in Melbourne on 4 – 11 November.

“Any player or young kids growing up dreams of representing their country, especially the first time you walk out onto the pitch in the green and gold, it’s a special occasion,” the 36-time Socceroo said.

“For these players, the Pararoos and the ParaMatildas now, to be on home soil at the Home of the Matildas, it’s going to be an incredible experience.”

Elise Kellond-Knight echoed those sentiments.

“I’m excited for them. I’m going to be in the grandstands cheering them on, it’s a first moment for them to experience in their careers,” she said. “I hope they really cherish it.”

“Nothing quite beats playing on home soil as opposed to being overseas. Their friends and family, everyone gets the opportunity to come and watch them play,” Emily Gielnik added.

The championships are an opportunity to see a part of the tangible impact of the legacy of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™.

“It shows that Australia is a footballing nation, and this is just another part of it really,” Kellond-Knight said.

Kennedy explained that accessibility to watch football of all kinds was an important part of Legacy '23.

“Football over the last 12 months – we’ve seen a men’s World Cup, a women’s World Cup, and a jump in participation in community football in clubs right around Australia,” he said.

“Having the Pararoos and the ParaMatildas accessible to the Australian public, growing the awareness around their game but also participation in general, I think it ties in nicely around legacy.”

Finally, all three players shared messages with the Australian football public as to why they should come out and support the tournament.

“Let’s keep the football fever going and let’s support both teams at the Asian Oceania Championships,” Kennedy said.

“We’ve seen a massive success with the World Cup, so I would urge everyone to back the Pararoos and ParaMatildas, get out to the Home of the Matildas, and throw your support behind them, and I think you’ll enjoy the experience as well.”

“Get out there and support them,” Kellond-Knight expressed. “It’s just another version of our sport. We’re really playing the same sport at the end of the day.”

“It’s amazing to get behind another Australian team. We’re a proud nation. This is a way that we can really support them, bring them home, and make sure they’re winning teams.”

Emily Gielnik finished with a resounding call to action.

“Come out in numbers,” she said. “Be proud. I know we’re proud, the Matildas.”

“Come out in numbers, show your support, please wear the green and gold, and we’ll see you there.”

You can catch the CommBank Pararoos and the CommBank ParaMatildas at the IFCPF Asian Oceania Championships. They will be held from 4 – 11 November 2023 at the Home of the Matildas in Bundoora, Melbourne.

Find more information, including how to buy tickets and the match schedule, here.