Player at play

She’s back on home soil to take part in the biggest tournament of her life. Here’s how one Matildas defender will be spending her free time.

Steph Catley
Steph Catley, defender, the Matildas

She joined East Bentleigh FC when she was just six years old. Back then, Steph Catley was the only girl on the team. Now, she’s surrounded by the best players in the world. During the English Women’s Super League season, the Melbourne local is a defender with Arsenal, but right now she’s in Australia for the FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023. Here’s what she loves around town. 

Where do you grab your coffee? 
If I’m staying with my brother in Hawthorn, I love Top Paddock in Richmond and Higher Ground in the city. Otherwise, my morning brew is always from Omar & The Marvellous Coffee Bird. 

Your favourite daytime spot? 
Melbourne Central is perfect for an unreal shopping day if you want access to every single shop you can think of in the heart of the city, connected to a main train station. It also puts you central to plenty of incredible restaurants and sightseeing spots. 

Favourite activity? 
I love finding new places for coffee and brunch, and Melbourne is heaving with incredible cafes. I also love heading down to the Mornington Peninsula for a day at the beach. 

Favourite restaurant? 
Angus & Bon in Prahran. It’s a steakhouse and brunch spot with a New York vibe.  


"In the heart of Melbourne, there’s nothing quite like a packed, roaring MCG, so I would say an AFL game is a must-see. Further away, there are spots like Wilsons Promontory and the Great Ocean Road."

What does it mean to have the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 come to Melbourne?
It’s like my two great loves colliding in the best possible way. Melbourne is in my DNA – I love everything about it. My family is in Melbourne and now the biggest stage and biggest moment of my career will be in my home city. You can’t ask for much more.

Steph Catley's Melbourne must-dos

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