Olivia Bomford switches Tasmania for ACT
Olivia Bomford (no. 9) celebrates her goal against Zebras in the final round of the 2019 Women's Super League season. Photo credit: Solstice Digital

Olympia FC Warriors midfielder Olivia Bomford has made the switch from Tasmania’s Women’s Super League, signing on with NPL ACT side Belconnen United FC.

Bomford has scored 61 goals over four years of senior football with the Eastern Shore club. Highlights include Summer Cup, Women’s Championship and Statewide Cup victories in 2016, as well as several other titles over the years. I had the chance to chat with Olivia about her footballing journey and what led to her move to the Blue Devils.

Bomford (right) playing U10s for Eastern Region at the Devonport Cup, next to her good friend Nicola Rogers. Photo supplied.

“I first wanted to play soccer when I was 3 because my older brother started playing,” she said. “I joined Lindisfarne Junior Soccer club when I was 6 and from there I went on to join the Skillerettes program and was selected into the state rep team to play in Coffs Harbour.”

“I joined the NTC program at 13 and began playing senior women’s football. At 15 I joined Olympia because the NTC full-time program was shut down in Tasmania and we all moved to clubs.”

Bomford was even part of the Olympia men’s Academy team in her earlier years.

“I trained and played with the boys teams to challenge myself. The coaches and players at Olympia have always supported me and welcomed me, even when I tagged along to the men’s training because I was so desperate to train!”

The Olympia U17 team before a game against South Lakes Cosmos at the Dallas International Cup. Photo supplied.

In 2018 Bomford was included in Olympia’s U17 squad for the Dallas International Cup, a tournament which offers world-class competition at all levels.

“We played South Lakes Cosmos, Enid Elite, Dallas Texans, Toronto Blizzard and Preston North End. We didn’t actually win any of our games, but had some really close games. The positive was that it was a huge learning experience and a great life experience too – it opened our eyes to different styles of football and the elite level of football that is played internationally”.

“These cup tournaments were one of my favourite memories of junior football.”

The Olympia squad at the Dallas International Cup. Photo credit: Sarah Black

Olympia’s Manager Alistair Russell was beaming with pride earlier last week when he made the announcement of Bomford’s departure.

“Her talent has long been recognised but over the last few years she has worked incredibly hard to make that talent effective in games and has learned how to dominate opposition and have a real influence on winning,” he said. “Her attitude to improving has been superb”.

“She leaves Olympia with the very best wishes of the Board, Coaches and her fellow players. Good luck Liv, you will always be a Warrior.”

Olympia manager Alistair Russell. Photo Credit: Tanner Coad

Bomford praised Russell for all his support with her development over the years.

“My biggest support has come from him, he has coached me for the past two seasons. He went out of his way to find new challenges for me and always provided me with the advice and support I need, not to mention the hundreds of 1 on 1 sessions he did for me!”

Bomford clears the ball away during a 2019 Women’s Super League match against South Hobart. Photo Credit: Tanner Coad

After Olympia’s 2nd place finish in the Women’s Super League last year, Olivia got in contact with Belconnen head coach Alen Marin, which led to her subsequently travelling to Canberra for several training sessions and a practice match.

“After contacting Alen the decision was made that I would make the move. Belconnen has been really successful over the past couple of years and place a real emphasis on the importance of female football. I’m really excited to get over there and start training”, she said.

“Now it just comes down to a lot of hard work and hopefully I can reach my goals and represent Tasmanian football well on the Mainland.”

Bomford wanted to thank Olympia for all they have done for her career, as well as her family for helping her get this far.

“At Olympia I’ve always felt at home. It will be sad to leave, and I’ll miss the fantastic group of girls that I’ve shared the pitch with for the last four years”, she said.

“My brother was really influential in my first few years of playing and he’s always been someone I look up to. Now he’s in America playing soccer at college in Missouri.”

“I have my parents to thank for their endless support, guidance and love. I couldn’t have done this without them, especially with all the driving they do to and from trainings and games.”

Olivia with her brother at her first FFA National Youth Championships in 2014. Photo supplied.
Olivia with her father Rodney. Photo supplied.

More WSL TAS Coverage