THE northern corridor has seen significant success and growth of soccer in recent times.
The City of Joondalup currently has Sorrento, ECU Joondalup and Joondalup United football clubs in the National Premier Leagues WA (NPL WA), with the potential for Joondalup City to also move up, according to Councillor Nige Jones.
At the February council meeting, Cr Jones requested a report into how the City can meet the needs of all soccer clubs within its boundaries.
This would include identifying, in consultation with the local community, future locations to host senior NPL WA clubs as well as training and junior facility needs and engaging with Football West to find a suitable home for soccer within the northern corridor.
Cr Jones said the issue of finding Joondalup United a home ground, which cost the City $36,000, was a “learning curve”.
Since 2016, the City’s proposals to house Joondalup United at Forrest Park in Padbury, Warrandyte Park in Craigie, Beldon Park and Prince Regent Park in Heathridge have all been defeated.
“It’s time we sat around and started to get a strategy to accommodate the next NPL team that comes in to the City of Joondalup and also the existing ones,” he said.
“Last year, Sorrento, with their success in the FFA Cup, were on national television with the City of Joondalup banners around the ground giving us national coverage.
“This is an opportunity to put the City on the map through the NPL soccer vehicle.”
He added that Football West was also looking for a home and there was “possibly State Government funding available with that”.
Cr Christopher May agreed and said the issue of finding Joondalup United a home had “not gone away”, while Cr Sophie Dwyer said it was “really important” to have an overarching strategic approach to dealing with the issue.
“I hope this report includes some mechanism to engage with Foootball West to see if their expectations and the way they fund those expectations are reasonable and what we can do to make sure we minimise any negative impact on our communities and make sure bringing football to our communities actually increases the amenity for our residents,” she said.
The call for the report was unanimously supported.