How Afghanistan women’s football teammade it to Australia
In Australia, football is for women only. It has been that way since the 1970s, and it still is.
But Afghanistan has now shown that women’s football can travel.
The women’s team has just arrived in Australia.
As the national Afghan team, they played a 1-0 win against Singapore’s team.
They had been invited to the Australian Football International Cup in Melbourne and Sydney.
The AFA Cup is Australia’s biggest competition for women’s teams, including the national teams of some states. Every year thousands of women’s teams play in the competition.
Many of these teams get together in small countries in the Middle East and Asia such as Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. The teams are a mixture of local players and visiting teams from elsewhere.
On this occasion, the Australian team was made up of international players – most with Afghan heritage. There were also some Australian stars in the side, including Australia’s most successful female player Jessica Ennis, the national teams’ head coach and international referees.
We spent time in Australia to find out more about the women’s team, and to discover what made them so successful.
Afghan women’s football, by the numbers
The Afghan women’s football team is made up of 100 players and is split up into two 20-person squads. Two members of each team play on a professional basis, with a salary of about $160 USD (£95, $185).
The squad is made up of players from all parts of Afghanistan, and contains players of all ages.
The team plays in the Afghani League, which is based in the southern part of Afghanistan.
There are two clubs in the league: Torkham and Kabul are in the north, and Herat and Mazar-i-Sharif are in the south.
The team has won seven of nine games, the most recent win being in 2009, when they played Iraq. In the past decade, they have gone from strength to strength and finished fifth in their most recent league campaign.
The AFA Cup – or the Australian Football International Cup – is a competition held in Australia every year. It is one of the biggest domestic competitions for women’s teams, and has been held in Australia since 2000.