WITH the AFLW pre-season well underway, the question once again around part-time footballers has come to the fore.
Charlotte Wilson and Darcy Vescio are two players in different stages in their career, but they have a common goal: to change the structure of the AFLW competition.
When talking on the ‘Stuck With’ podcast, Vescio and Wilson were vocal about the football-life balance and how many struggle to deal with the workload.
“At times, it’s definitely hard, you do feel overwhelmed,” Wilson said.
“Uni can be overwhelming just by itself so when you chuck in work and professional sport on top, it can be pretty intense.”
As well as finding time to complete their commitments, Vescio noted that it was potentially hindering their abilities as footballers altogether.
“I definitely think about how we’re really capped at what we can achieve,” Vescio said.
“For me, it's really talking about where we could take the game if we were given that opportunity, because it would be unrecognisable if we were able to dedicate ourselves full-time to the craft.”
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When asked about what would need to happen to make these changes, both Vecsio and Wilson agreed that pushing the structures and processes were the only way to ensure change would eventually occur.
“If the governing bodies put things into action, then everything clicks in and things speed up and things happen,” Vescio said.
“I think hopefully those decisions are being made to fast track our development because I think we’re ready for it every time it happens.”
Wilson agreed that without players like Vescio and the other foundation marquee players, no progress would have been made in the first place.
“I was able to come through the talent pathway for two years and before that it wasn’t there,” Wilson said.
“If you guys hadn’t have got done what you had got done and actually started a competition, then that pathway for myself and heaps of other talented ladies wouldn’t have been able to come through and make it and play.
“I think you’ve always got to be grateful for the people who have fought the battle before you and then you’ve got to keep doing it again for the next girls coming through.”