Kerr’s big challenge for Westfield Matildas

Hometown favourite Sam Kerr has declared this is the best Westfield Matildas group she’s ever been a part of and has challenged the side to win a major tournament in the next few years.

Perth-born Kerr is back in her home city ahead of Monday night’s friendly clash against Thailand at nib Stadium.

It’s the Westfield Matildas’ last hitout before they head to Jordan for next month’s AFC Women’s Asian Cup.

The tournament will also double as FIFA World Cup qualification, with the Westfield Matildas needing to finish in the top five of the eight-nation Asian Cup.

It’s the start of a big couple of years for Alen Stajcic’s squad who are aiming to make a big impact at a major tournament after a breakout 2017.

"I think that's been the Matildas downfall - we haven't performed at a major tournament to the best of our abilities," Kerr told reporters on Friday.

"Hopefully we can win the Asian Cup and then medal or win the World Cup.

"This is our best team yet, and this is the best chance we have.

“These next three years are really important for us."

After missing out on the recent Algarve Cup, defender Steph Catley is looking forward to what’s ahead for the Westfield Matildas, starting with the Thailand clash.

Catley said the squad have been working hard on the training pitch in Perth, ramping up both physical and tactical preparations for the Asian Cup.

Westfield Matildas and Orlando Pride star Steph Catley.
Steph Catley

As the highest-ranked nation in Asia, Australia will start the tournament as favourites and Catley believes the “family” atmosphere in the squad will hold them in good stead.

“A large group of us came from under-17s, under-20s, playing against or with each other in the W-League from when we were about 15-years-old,” she said.

“We know each other inside out, on the field and off the field so it’s like a big family coming in here.

“As soon as you put on that jersey you get so excited to play and it doesn’t take much for motivation,” Catley added.

“Whenever you are out there you just want to do whatever it takes to win and being around such quality players and such quality girls makes it easy.”

Westfield Matildas v Thailand

WHEN: Monday, March 26 - kick-off 9pm AEDT

WHERE: nib Stadium, Perth

HOW TO WATCH: LIVE on Fox Sports 501 and SBS Viceland

Get tickets to the match here