As Football NSW Institute Captain Charlie Rule begins to climb the ranks, she says it’s fantastic to see former teammates battling it out in front of the world at the Tokyo Olympics.
For an 18-year-old, Charlie Rule has constructed a remarkable footballing resume.
With five years under her belt with the FNSW Institute, a breakout season in the 2020/21 Westfield W-League along with being a valued member of the Future Matildas program, collecting Young Matildas caps in the process, Rule is fast becoming one to keep an eye on.
Having spent the entirety of her teenage years with the Institute, Rule has credited the environment as a key aspect for her development.
“The environment at the FNSW Institute is fantastic.
“Having been there for a while I’ve trained and played with some great players which has really helped me to develop.”
A definitive factor in the FNSW Institute’s developmental success has come from the notion of giving footballers the chance to compete against the best, who more often than not, are multiple years olders than the girls.
It is this factor that Rule believes has allowed for her to transition smoothly into Future and Young Matildas camps.
“Playing for ‘The Institute’ has always seen me be up against girls much older than myself.
“Which means I’ve become used to versing players much more physical than myself but also players who are really gifted technically.
“This has forced me to really lift my game which has made playing against girls my own age in the Australian camps easier.”
For a young footballer like Rule, it’s vitally important to be able to look to the future and to those competing at the top level and see a pathway.
For the women’s game in Australia, that pathway has developed significantly in recent years as we continue to see girls graduate into the Young Matildas and beyond.
For Rule, she says it’s been fantastic to watch former players competing currently for Australia at the Tokyo Olympics.
“It’s inspiring to see where we can potentially go as footballers.
“Competing at competitions like the Olympics is a goal of mine, so to see young players there, especially those like Kyra Cooney-Cross showing what can be achieved with hard work is definitely inspiring.
“I’ve been training really hard with my brother during lockdown to make sure I can jump straight back in once we’re allowed back out there so I can continue to develop and chase my dream.”
-By Joseph Esposito