Three QAS players who attended a Westfield Junior Matildas training camp last week did Queensland proud, according to head coach Rae Dower.
Margaret Barrett, Daisy Brown and Charlie Gibson returned to Brisbane on Friday after a rewarding few days at Valentine Sports Park in Sydney.
“All three were a real credit to themselves and to the ongoing success of the QAS program,” said Dower.
“I’ve been fortunate to watch their development closely for the last two and a half years and they deserved their opportunity to train and play alongside some of the best young players across the country.
“The QAS is continuing to provide a strong foundation of support in the development of women’s footballers in Queensland.
“Historically, Queensland boasts a high number of Matildas representatives, so Daisy, Maggie and Charlie are in a very good environment to help them continue their development and realise their potential.”
Charlie Gibson, 15, said the camp was a new experience for her after three years of hard work in the QAS program.
“The coaching was great, and all the players were very talented. It was good to be in an environment where everyone is so driven and accomplished,” said Gibson.
“The QAS program has allowed me to develop as a player from all the coaching support and knowledge. It’s very different to what you get at club level; it’s very elite and the coaching has helped me become a better player and achieve my goals.
“My dream is to become a Matilda. I love the game and it would be amazing to represent my country at the international level.”
FQ State Technical Director Gabor Ganczer congratulated the QAS Junior Matildas on their achievements, while recognising that eight Queenslanders were nominated in the preliminary squad.
“It has been terrific to watch the progress of these young women and we are very proud of their involvement in the Junior Matildas camp,” said Ganczer.
“Maggie, Daisy and Charlie have all been part of the QAS since the expansion of the QAS Girls program in 2018 to include U13, U14 and U15 teams.”
Ganczer added that Queensland would have had a fourth Junior Matilda at the camp were it not for an injury to up-and-coming Brothers Townsville goalkeeper, Layne Chapman, who was identified through FQ’s Talent Support Program (TSP) in North Queensland.
“Although Layne was unlucky to miss out on this camp due to injury, her selection for the Junior Matildas shows there is a clear pathway from regional Queensland to Australia’s national teams via TSP,” said Ganczer.
“In 2023, Australia will co-host the FIFA Women’s World Cup and FQ will continue to provide resources and support for aspirational young female talent across the state. Good things are happening in Queensland.”
The AFC U17 Women’s Asian Cup 2022 Qualifiers will be held in Cessnock, NSW, in September 2021.
Images: Ann Odong/Football Australia