The rebel Female Football Week National Awards were held this morning in Melbourne, with two of our very own taking top honours.
Lucy Topp, a Canberra United diehard since Day 1, was awarded with the W-League Female Fan Award for her decade of passion and dedication to the team. Along with her, Georgia Ghirardello took out the Member Federation Female Referee of the Year Award in recognition of her nine years as a referee, and recently as a live-in mentor in the 2017 Kanga Cup and a member of the Referee Standing Advisory Committee.
Lucy has been a part of the Canberra United family since the inception of the W-League, and was one of the first five people to sign up as a member. She has not missed a season since, loving the close-knit community at home games, “my favourite thing about game day is catching up with my supporter friends that have sat near me since we got the Green Membership.” For the other CU Fans, Lucy’s win comes at no shock, but Lucy herself felt “surprised and honoured” by her nomination and win.
“My team is the best team I could follow and that is why I go to support them.”
From the stands to the sideline, Georgia Ghirardello, was a linesman for the 2017/18 W-League season, but had humble beginnings at Woden Valley Football Club refereeing juniors on Saturdays. For Georgia, “football is a passion I’ve never been able to let go”, an attitude she attributes to the support, friends and community surrounding the game.
“The award itself isn’t just a reflection on what I’ve achieved as an individual. [It] shows the significant impact people can have when they give a referee support, the plan to succeed and opportunities to dream.”
Georgia now has her sights set on becoming a middle referee in the W-League, and is well on her way after passing her a-panel fitness test, and continuing her level 1 referee course and NPL experience.
She would also like to let any females thinking about refereeing that they have nothing to lose, but so much to gain.
“Refereeing was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.”
A big congratulations to these two very deserving winners!