Gympie women’s Miners player Annika Coyne will take her game to England next month as part of a 16-member Australian academy squad. In England, the squad will play games and take part in training sessions with respected coaches of the game.
Gympie women’s Miners player Annika Coyne will take her game to England next month as part of a 16-member Australian academy squad. In England, the squad will play games and take part in training sessions with respected coaches of the game. Craig Abbott

Coyne to tour England next month

GYMPIE women’s Miners defender Annika Coyne is one of 16 players in Australia selected for an academy squad to tour England next month.

Coyne, 15, was shocked when an invite accompanied by a brochure arrived in the post presenting her with the rare opportunity.

“There wasn’t a trial at all, so I had no idea we were all being considered,” she said.

“The selectors had been just travelling around watching us play and made a decision from that who they would take in the squad.”

Coyne has had some time to let the news sink in but is still fighting the urge to pinch herself to see if it’s all real.

“I just can’t believe it,” she said.

“I’ve always wanted to go to England to play for either futsal or soccer as one of my goals and now it’s happening.”

In England for two weeks, Coyne will play a series of games with the Australian squad and participate in high-level training sessions.

The Gympie player is particularly excited about the chance to train under some of the game’s biggest and most respected names.

“They will have some top coaches over there and I’m excited about the opportunity,” she said.

“I’m bound to return a better player because of the experience.”

Coyne admits to a few nerves beginning to set in but won’t let that deter her from making the most of the trip.

“I haven’t met the other girls, so I’m a little nervous about that but we all fly out together, so we will meet in Brisbane,” she said.

The vast majority of players selected for the squad come from major city centres, making Coyne’s selection even more remarkable as a player from a regional area.

Coyne took up soccer in her early primary school years when her brother Michael first signed up. Since those early beginnings, she has never looked back.

“I really enjoy playing and being a part of the women’s Miners this year has been the best experience,” she said.

Playing in England will take Coyne’s game to the next level.

Gympie Times


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