Westfield Matildas are inspiring the nation

If there was any doubt the Westfield Matildas have captured the imagination of the Australian sporting public, we got the answer on a sunny Saturday afternoon in Sydney’s west.

As more than 15,000 fans streamed into Penrith’s Pepper Stadium, you could sense something special was happening.

When you are part of something significant, you don’t just experience it, it is felt. And on Saturday at the Foot of the Mountains, you could certainly feel it.

Preview: Westfield Matildas v Brazil

See Matildas open training session in Newcastle

The Westfield Matildas have arrived. And the whole nation is behind them!

What’s not to love about this young, fresh entertaining team. They are everything Australian sports fans love.

Not afraid to rip in, go for broke and take on the world’s best.

And when you’re taking on Brazil in football, you are playing against a world superpower.

Sure, we gave the Samba stars a touch-up [6-1 at the recent Tournament of Nations] in the last meeting between the two nations, but with five-time World Player of the Year Marta in tow, Brazil imagined this would be different.

It was all smiles after a job well done.

While it was closer and more competitive this time, you should never doubt this group of young Australian women.

It was significant that it was veteran Lisa De Vanna and young gun – and arguably the world’s best female player – Sam Kerr got the goals.

The pair are at opposite stages in their careers but underlines how this is a Westfield Matildas team for the generations.

They are inspiring not only footballers, but the nation.

You only had to see the faces of the fans during an absorbing 90 minutes, or post-match as the players did their lap of honour, posing for photos and signing autographs.

The fans – young and old, male and female – lapped it up. You got the sense they knew this was pretty special to be a part of.

If you missed out, the good news is there’s another chance to see this incredible team again on Tuesday night in Newcastle.

A few fans in the sell-out crowd in Penrith soak up the atmosphere.

Hunter fans love an exciting, winning team and the Westfield Matildas are that right now.

If they weren’t already here after their exploits over the last few years, then Saturday showed Australia’s Women’s Football team have arrived.

So join in, get on board and enjoy the ride.