Letter from CEO Scott Hudson regarding Sydney Derby

It is with disappointment and anger that I must address with you recent speculation regarding the Sydney Derby fixtures in the Isuzu UTE A-Leagues 2023/24 season.

A statement released on Friday by the opposition club outlined that Allianz Stadium will again host two Sydney Derby fixtures next season, consecutive years hosting these events. 

While a change in cycle to the derbies was agreed in June 2019, to assist during the construction of Allianz Stadium, the impact of COVID-19 led to our club hosting the March 2020 Sydney Derby at CommBank Stadium behind-closed-doors meaning the intention of the agreement was void due to the match not being played in front of our home members and fans.

The APL Executive Management is suggesting that regardless of this context, and other factors including substantial financial compensation provided to Sydney during their relocation, the previous arrangement around the cycle of Sydney Derby hosting rights remains and must be enacted this season. 

We strongly believe and argue that our members and fans have been ignored and undervalued, again. Throughout, there has been a complete lack of process where limited consultation was provided to the club with no consideration of the facts in determining this unsatisfactory outcome. 

We know that our passionate members and fans attend this fixture at a rate of two-to-one to the opposition, and with the rising cost of living making it increasingly challenging for them to attend fixtures away from home, this outcome is a kick in the guts to the Western Sydney community.

Local businesses in the region are also set to suffer in Western Sydney with the Sydney Derby crowds supporting local trade, a further economic impact on our region who were heavily affected during the COVID lockdowns of 2020 and 2021.

Our members and fans deserve to see this match played in Western Sydney.

We will continue to fight for our members and fans on this issue. 

Scott Hudson
Western Sydney Wanderers CEO