Development key for youthful FHM

Forrest Hill Milford’s Lotto NRFL Women’s Premier captain Chloe Wilson is keen to create a positive environment for up and coming talent, one that will see players stick around for a number of years.

Wilson – who surprisingly is one of the older members of the squad at just 22 years old – has been with the North Shore based side since it became a Premier League club in 2013.

“I have been at Forrest Hill Milford since the Premier Women’s team was formed four years ago,” Wilson said.

“I have seen a lot of players come and go during that time so I really want to be part of creating a positive environment – one that will have players wanting to stick around for more than one or two seasons.

“Development is one of our goals, not just for this season, but for the club as a whole.”

As well as a hefty turnover of players, Forrest Hill also had a change in coach, with Ben Bate coming on board as the third coach in as many years.

Like Wilson, Bate also promotes a developmental environment, with results coming as a reward rather than the focus.

“We go into every game focussed on our performances both individually and collectively,” Bate said.

“Three points is the reward for everyone performing within the team framework, not the focus.”

While quiet on the sidelines, the work Bate does behind the scenes is what helps this youthful Forrest Hill side compete with the best week in week out.

“Ben has been awesome,” Wilson said.

“He may be quiet on the sideline during games, but he analyses everything we do in great detail.

“He isn’t afraid to change our dynamics according to the team we are versing and he’s always changing the line up too, giving the younger girls a taste of premier football which I think is great.”

Forrest Hill currently sit just outside of the top five with one win under their belt from four matches, however Wilson and her team mates aren’t letting the slow start to the season get them down with a view of finishing top five come the season end.

“We haven’t come away with as many wins as we would like but it’s still early days and the team aren’t taking this negatively.

“Every game is a new learning curve for us,” Wilson adds.

“At the end of the season we would really like to be in the top five and hopefully we can progress through the New Zealand Football Women’s Knockout Cup also.”

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