Kyah Simon has called for all general sports fans to turn up to Melbourne and Geelong this week for the Matildas’ friendlies against China and because they are guaranteed to be entertained.
World No.6 Australia will lock horns with the Chinese on Wednesday night in AAMI Park and Sunday evening in Kardinia Park in preparation for the 2018 Asian Cup in Jordan.
The Matildas recently had stirring back-to-back wins over Brazil in Penrith and Newcastle with both games attracting over 15,000 people to the grounds.
Simon has spent the majority of her W-League career in Sydney, but now calls Victoria home with powerhouse Melbourne City.
So far 10,000 – 12,000 people are expected to stroll into AAMI Park on Wednesday and Simon said it was not enough.
“I urge everyone to come out, families, football people and non-football people, just witness a game first-hand because I think you’ll be surprised at what you witness,” Simon told FourFourTwo.
“Melbourne is my new hometown, I’m challenging everyone to come out and support us against China.
“AAMI Park is a fantastic stadium especially when it’s full, we’ve played a few City games in the stadium since the W-League has started this season.
“It’ll be great to see the stadium filled with green and gold and to see as many Victorians supporting us in the city, but also in Geelong on the weekend.”
Simon also said while they aspire to be the best in the world, they also aim to genuinely entertain the crowd.
“I think we play a brand and style of football that’s attractive football, I think that’s the philosophy of the team and the coaching staff,” she said.
“A lot of people I have spoken to that haven’t watched a game ever in their life, they are actually quite surprised and entertained when they watch it.
“That’s great feedback from the non-football people and football people. If we can continue to play like that then I think that’s good for the brand of football in Australia.”
These upcoming games could prove to be important for Australia entering the Asian Cup as China have just appointed a new coach, Sigurdur Ragnar Eyjolfsson.
While Simon admitted the general public may be unfamiliar with the Chinese team, she said they were an opposition to be respected.
“I don’t think you can ever underestimate an opposition especially an Asian team, they’re always competitive and it’s always a tough task when we face them,” Simon said.
“No matter if it’s a major tournament or just a friendly, it’s going to be tough and we’re definitely prepared for that.
“Every time we’re together as a team and every time we get an opportunity to play an international game whether it’s for points or a friendly, it’s preparation for those major tournaments.
“It doesn’t matter if it’s in two or four years, it’s all preparation for us to get together and create that team cohesion on and off the park in hope that we can then perform and have momentum going into those tournaments.”