Loyalty means a lot to Nicki Flannery, so it’s no wonder Michelle Heyman does too.
The striker is preparing to play a milestone match this weekend, set to notch up an incredible 100 games in green, when Canberra United takes on the Newcastle Jets.
Flannery said it’s a match all the girls are determined to get up for, to ring in the milestone in style.
“She deserves it, she’s already made incredible records this season and this is another great milestone for her,” Flannery said.
“It’s incredible I was just talking to the girls and we said we’re all willing to do something that’s going to celebrate her 100th game.
“She’s a loyal player to the club, to the fans and the community here in Canberra and I think that’s going to give us extra drive to get through and get the three points.”
A fan long before she was a friend, any initial fear of playing alongside her hero was quickly eased.
After signing with United in 2015, it didn’t take long for Flannery to realise that Heyman was just as warm and welcoming as she appeared on the pitch.
“I used to look up to her a lot as a player and she used to score goals in front of eyes every weekend when I went to games with my dad and then I started playing with her,” Flannery said.
“She’s exactly what she’s like on the field, she’s so much fun and I really think that’s what I admire about her.
“She’s so authentic, what you see is what you get and luckily for me I get to spend more time with her than most.
“I guess I’m still sort of in shock, it’s an honour to play alongside Michelle. She’s one of my closest friends off the field as well, so it’s a really special bond that we’ve created by playing with each other and she’s like a sister to me.”