When the Matildas play Brazil in Sydney on Saturday night, they'll have broken a really significant record before a ball is kicked.
For the first time, our national football team has sold out a stadium for a home match. That's right, the Matildas will be playing before a full house at Pepper Stadium, the 22,500-capacity western Sydney arena which hosts the NRL's Penrith Panthers.
Bear in mind that the Panthers played at Pepper Stadium all year, and did not come close to having a sellout. The Panthers are now in the second week of the NRL finals too, so the team was clearly worth watching this year.
But their drawing power is not up to that of the Matildas, who are everyone's favourite national sporting team right now after their amazing win in the inaugural Tournament of Nations in August.
Australia beat the U.S. (for the first time ever), Japan (with bonus acrobatics thrown in for free) and then Brazil (by a whopping 6-1) in that tournament, which was held on U.S. soil. It signalled the fact that hey, we've really got something exciting going on here. Team spirit is high, the style of play is attractive -- what's not to love about the Matildas?
Meanwhile, Matildas players are thrilled with the response from the Sydney public, who have warmed to this event in a manner you normally associate with Meburnians -- some of whom appeared not to turn up to the recent Socceroos clash in Melbourne which was billed as a sellout.
"It's really exciting to sell out stadiums, that's not something I thought would ever happen, Seattle-based Aussie goalkeeper Lydia Williams told the Football Australia website.
"Playing overseas a lot and playing in tournaments, you get that special feeling when you walk out in a crowded stadium. But to have it on home soil is something I don't think any of us ever dreamed of, or have been a part of before."
W-League player and fellow Matilda Clare Polkinghorne told the site she'd always hoped the day would come when the Matildas played before full houses.
"I've been in the team for a number of years now and seen it grow from humble beginnings to being in the spotlight with people interested and wanting to come and watch us play and the kids knowing who the Matildas are, which is awesome.
"To have a sold-out stadium with Aussie fans is going to be pretty special."
It will indeed be special, and HuffPost Australia associate editor and football nut Luke Cooper will be out there at the game, so please keep an eye out for his report. Oh, and if you want tickets for the second game in Newcastle, get in super fast as it looks like selling out too.Suggest a correction