Fifteen, Ten & Twenty-Three


Karly Roestbakken became one of the W-League’s youngest scorers in the historic win over Melbourne City

15 years. 10 months. 23 days.

That was Karly Roestabekken’s age on Saturday when she scored a historic goal in the Westfield W-League. Not only was it her first goal, marking her as one of the youngest players to score in the W-League, it was a goal that handed Melbourne City their first ever defeat in the league, following an extraordinary run through their first season and into this edition.

After a strong display from Canberra’s youngsters against the Jets two weeks before, Roestbakken firing home Nickoletta Flannery’s cross was just another demonstration of the ‘Generation-Next’ coming through the club. 

Flannery made her first ever W-League start against the reigning Premiers, a huge occasion for anyone let alone a 17-year old, and had an impressive 90 minutes on the flank, capped off by her perfect square to Roestbakken.

Speaking to the media ahead of Canberra United’s visit to the Children’s Hospital with the Tom Efkarpidis Foundation, Roestbakken said she was still in a bit of disbelief following the weekend.

“I’m really happy about that, but I’m still a bit shocked and can’t believe it happened,” she said. “But now we move on and we have to keep working hard.”

The team travel to Gosford this weekend for a home match against the Brisbane Roar, and said she has been happily surprised by how soon she has been given the opportunity to play with the first-team.

“I did not think I would be getting game time this soon, but with a couple of the gitls getting injured this is my opportunity.”

Head Coach Rae Dower said it is fantastic to see the new generation of youngsters make their waves in the footballing landscape.

“They are great kids first and foremost, great people, and they’re working hard, they want to improve so much and are bouncing off the rest of the girls in the environment,” she said.

“They bring a lot of quality to the team environment themselves, I said right from the beginning that they weren’t just there to make up the numbers  and that they’re good players who deserve their opportunity to play in the Premier competition in the country.”

“I was really proud of them on the weekend. That goal Karly scored on the weekend, she’d made that run 10 times previously, in the preceding 30 minutes and she was really confident,” Dower said.

“And she was really confident. She actually said to Hayley [Raso], ‘I really think I’m gonna score a goal’, so I’m really proud of the work they’ve put in, and the sacrifices they’ve made.”

United will take on the Roar at 2:30pm on Sunday afternoon, with the match set to be televised on ABC and Fox Sports, followed by the Hyundai A-League clash between Central Coast Mariners and Brisbane Roar.