The World Cup currently taking place in Australia and New Zealand has proven to be a cultural phenomenon.

Public interest in Australia has been unprecedented. It is without doubt the biggest sporting event held in this country since the Sydney Olympics.

It has even transcended sport to become THE THING that everyone is talking about. Crowd records have been smashed and TV viewership is through the roof.

Australia’s win over Denmark was the most watched show on television this year.

And the crowd support for the Matildas has been incredible. It has grown in volume and enthusiasm with each game, and the players have spoken repeatedly about how it’s inspiring them to play like women possessed.

It’s a different type of crowd to what you get at your average weekend footy game, or even grand finals or State of Origins. 

It’s made up of boys, girls, men, women, dads, grandmas — every splice of society — and the mood is overwhelmingly positive, happy and fun. People are there to cheer the Matildas, not boo the opposition. And it’s loud. Gloriously loud. 

Fans holding signs.

Many people would love to hear Waltzing Matilda at the start of games, but it’s not that simple.(ABC News: Brendan Esposito)

Last week I asked why Australian fans don’t have any universally accepted crowd chants or songs, aside from the increasingly naff “Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, oi, oi, oi!”

It’s the one small thing that seems to be missing. Imagine if the whole stadium erupted in song when the game got underway.

The question invoked a raucous response from readers, which fell roughly into two categories:

“Yes, absolutely, ‘oi, oi, oi’ is a national embarrassment and we need some more tunes!”

And from those involved in the active support: “We already have a buttload of great songs and chants, but how to get the whole crowd singing them?”

Female soccer players in gold jerseys embraces in celebration after scoring a goal

The Matildas are riding a wave of support in Australia.(LightRocket via Getty Images: Patricia Perez Ferraro)

There was also a tonne of suggestions sent in for new or existing songs that could take off across Australian stadiums.

Let’s take a look at some of them.

Waltzing Matilda

A crowd of football fans

Australian stadiums have been packed for Matildas games.(Getty Images: Dave Hewison)

There seems to be widespread agreement that Waltzing Matilda should be a Matildas anthem, either in its original form or a bespoke edition.

Here’s the Matildas Active Support’s (MAS) simple variation on the lyrics:

Waltzing Matildas

(Tune — Waltzing Matilda Trad.)

Waltzing Matilda, waltzing Matilda

You’ll come a waltzing Matilda with me.

As we stand and we sing for our women

in their green and gold,

You’ll come a waltzing Matilda with me.

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Here’s another suggestion from Helen from Queensland:

Once there was a captain who led her team to victory

They took the field, played the game, did us proud 

And they’ll beat all the other teams on their way to victory

Let’s go matildas

Go the Aussies

Let’s go Matildas, let’s go Matildas

Go score a goal, win the game, do us proud

And they’ll beat all the other teams on their way to victory

Let’s go Matildas, go the Aussies!

And one more from Nicholas Rees:

Oh our Matildas, oh our Matildas, our Matildas are the champions of the game.

From city lights, to outback nights you’ll hear us singing the same proud song, 

Our Matildas are the champions of the game.

A group called Sakana Nation has written and performed a song to the tune, specifically for Matildas fans.

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As for getting the whole crowd to sing Waltzing Matilda at the start and/or end of games, it’s not that simple at a World Cup.

FIFA has an approved list of songs which are allowed at the stadiums, as well as warm-up and celebration songs nominated by the teams themselves, meaning there is not much scope for a rendition of Waltzing Matilda before kick-off — or at least not over the loudspeakers.

The best time for the crowd to belt it out would likely be at kick-off, as the FIFA-approved music stops during play.


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If anyone has a blood feud with “oi, oi, oi”, it’s the MAS, who have a chant book with 25 chants, including for individual players.

More than anybody, they understand that simplicity is key if a chant or song is going to take off.

Here are a couple of their best.

We Love Matildas

(Tune – Can’t Take My Eyes Off You, Andy Williams)

We love Matildas, da da da da da da

We love Matildas, da da da da da da

We love Matildas, da da da da da da

Trust in me when I saaaaay

Alanna Kennedy

(Tune — The Addams Family)

She’s tough and she’s a winner,

She eats forwards for dinner,

You know she’s gonna skin ‘er,

Alanna Kennedy.

Da da da dum *clap* *clap* (x2)

Da da da dum, da da da dum, da da

But what does ChatGPT reckon?

Crowd at Denmark game.

Australia next play in Brisbane on Saturday.(ABC News: Brendan Esposito)

Of course, somebody (Mark Freed from NSW) decided to challenge ChatGPT to come up with a song for Aussies to sing at sporting events. Here’s what AI thinks would help inspire our athletes:

ChatGPT’s Australian sport anthem

(Verse 1)

In the land down under, we proudly stand,

With hearts united, hand in hand,

With courage and spirit, we take our stride,

Together we soar, side by side.


For Australia, our home so grand,

We raise our voices, a mighty band,

With pride and honor, we’ll never be coy,

We stand as one, our nation’s joy.

(Verse 2)

From beaches to deserts, our land is wide,

Our passion burns like the sun’s bright tide,

In every game, we’ll give our all,

For the green and gold, we’ll stand tall.


For Australia, our home so grand,

We raise our voices, a mighty band,

With pride and honor, we’ll never be coy,

We stand as one, our nation’s joy.

It goes on longer but I think we’ll leave it there. You lost me at “coy”, ChatGPT.

Existing songs that could be adopted

The Matildas posing as a team.

FIFA procedures before and after games can make spontaneous singing more difficult to organise.(ABC News: Brendan Esposito)

Vynka Malone says: “Agree with this article Dan, we have to get The Seekers’ I am Australian going, that would bring the stadium alive!” 

Jane from NSW suggests My Island Home.

James, and several others, suggest Land Down Under, which will trigger memories of Australia’s qualification for the 2006 Men’s World Cup, when it reverberated around the stadium following John Aloisi’s successful penalty kick.

James Disney has a couple of ideas:

“Sam Kerr’s on fire, your defence is terrified” (to tune of Freed from desire).

“Nana na naa na na na na, Ellie Carpenter Carpenter Ellie Carpenter” (to the tune of baby give it up, give it up baby give it up).

Does ‘oi, oi, oi’ have dark roots?

Several readers pointed out that “Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, oi, oi, oi” is likely an adaptation of a street chant used as a rallying cry by street gangs in the UK and Australia in the 1980s: “Oggy, oggy, oggy, oi, oi, oi.”

Some describe it as an intimidating chant, often used by far-right or xenophobic groups.

Its origins are far less hostile, though, with suggestions it comes from the Cornish term for a pasty, which tin miners’ wives would shout when they were delivering the delicious snacks to their husbands. 

Give it time

Australian female soccer players jump high in celebration in front of a crowd of fans

Matildas players after Australia scored a penalty goal in their games against Ireland in the FIFA WWC 2023 in Sydney.(AAP Image)

Just as we are on the field, off the field, Australia is still a developing football nation.

The more football becomes a mainstream and celebrated part of our society, the more the culture around it will mature.

This World Cup has no doubt accelerated that evolution exponentially.