PHOTO: VALENTINE SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
On the Bench with Sophie Milton
Team: Thornton Redbacks
Position: Centre Midfield
Shirt Number: 14
Sophie took a boot to ball at the age of five and played for her local club, Plattsburg Maryland.
Following her years at Plattsburg Maryland, Sophie progressed through the ranks and involved herself in any representative teams and training camps that were available to her; including Jonny Warren training academy and playing for both Newcastle Port Stephens and Macquarie Football representative teams in the State Youth League.
Sophie went on to represent Australia in Futsal and Northern NSW Football at the FFA Nationals three years in a row, between 2006 – 2008.
The year 2009 was a big year for Sophie, not only was it Sophie’s first taste of the Herald WPL at the competition’s inception, but Sophie ended the year training with the Newcastle Jets Women ahead of the 2009.10 season. Sophie, unfortunately, tore her meniscus in her right knee, which sidelined her for most of the Jets season.
At the time, Sophie was 16 years of age. She signed with Valentine FC’s first grade in the WPL and remained with the club for three seasons. It was Sophie’s final season with Valentine that the team made it to the grand final, winning 3 – 2 against Broadmeadow Magic. One goal was Sophie’s, where she booted an absolute screamer from 25 yards out.
In 2012 Sophie move clubs to Adamstown, following friends who were already at the club. The next season, Sophie wanted a change and saw an opportunity to play on in the PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues (NPL) NSW competition based in Sydney. She signed with Northern Tigers and commuted between cities for training and games.
Sophie heard the word of Thornton’s promotion into the Herald WPL and the news convinced Sophie to sign with the Redbacks for the 2014 season. At the conclusion of the 2014 season, Sophie was awarded Player of the Year for Thornton’s first-grade team.
At the end of 2015, Sophie relocated to Sydney’s Northern Beaches and decided to keep her football local, signing with Manly United FC in the PS4 NPL NSW for the 2016 season.
After a small break from playing this year, Sophie was back with the Thornton Redbacks for Round 11 where they played against the Wallsend Devils and won 1-0!
Clearly, Sophie has a soft spot for her team, and Sophie considers that this soft spot is because of the people she plays with. Sophie explained, “I think we have a good team that gels really well together, so it’s just a matter of finding the right combinations and being clinical with our opportunities”.
WPL PLAYERS’ PLAYER:
Sophie’s WPL players’ player mention goes to her two teammates, Celeste Ortega-Edwards and Jennifer Jongbloed. Sophie said the pair “never fails to make me laugh, on and off the field”. Sophie has a lot of admiration for both players who give it their all each game, she said that “despite results not going their way or not having a star-studded lineup, they keep coming back season after season and are always up for every game”.
OFF THE FIELD:
Sophie is a super busy person who keeps active in sport even when she’s away from football, working full-time for Sport NSW and running programs across the State to encourage more females to participate in sport. She also studies a Bachelor of Business part-time where she majors in Sports Management. When she’s away from sporting dedications entirely, Sophie loves adventuring! She said she’s “always keen for a coffee, seeing shows in Sydney or sussing out new restaurants with my partner, Gabe”.