Nicole Barrett, Holyport and Bracknell Town: Neil Maskell’s 2021 awards

Nicole Barrett in action for Maidenhead United. Photo: Darren Woolley /
Nicole Barrett in action for Maidenhead United. Photo: Darren Woolley /

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In lieu of Football in Berkshire being able to hold it’s annual award ceremony, regular contributors to the site have been asked to make their own decisions over seven categories, from Player of the Season to the best game attended.

Tom Canning has already made his decisions here, now it is the turn of Maidenhead United’s Neil Maskell to make his choices based on what he has seen during 2020/21.

Player of the Season

Nicole Barrett. The right-back has been a revelation for Maidenhead United Women since joining this summer. Nicole has previously been with Reading and Oxford and that high level of soccer is obvious from her composure and quality on the ball. Most recently playing in the States, she has set up her own caching business – ABC Kick – from scratch, engaging local youngster in Woodley every weekend. Nicole has great energy and has an infectious personality.

Nicole Barrett. Photo: Darren Woolley /
Nicole Barrett. Photo: Darren Woolley /

Manager of the Season

Nevin Saroya. The MUWFC gaffer has improved his side immeasurably. Before lockdown his team had enjoyed a run to Round 1 of the Women FA Cup and made their best-ever start to a FAWNL season.

Volunteer of the Season

Rich Harvey. Whether it is pitch prep or painting, Rich does so much to help in the background at Holyport FC

The best game you went to was..

Bracknell Town 2-3 Havant & Waterlooville. Probably the only match I have been to this season that had anything like a ‘proper’ matchday atmosphere. The Robins gave high-flying and big-spending National South side Havant a proper game in the FA Trophy and were the better team for a long period with 10 men at 1-1.

Your favourite ground was..

Ascot United. I made my first visit to the revamped Racecourse Ground, Ascot with its new 3G pitch. Excellent set up there now, worthy of Step 4 football soon, I hope.

Your favourite social media outlet was..

Woodley United Ladies: I do enjoy the Woodley United Ladies Twitter account, which has been active and upbeat during Lockdown.

Any honourable mentions?

Chelsea Women's star Fran Kirby celebrates against Reading FC Women.
Chelsea Women’s star Fran Kirby celebrates against Reading FC Women. Photo: Neil Graham /

I was lucky enough to be reporting for FiB at the Madejski to witness by some distance the best footballing performance I have seen this season. Reading-born Fran Kirby put her home town club to the sword with a stunning four-goal salvo. She was unplayable. I have to confess having seen her play in the flesh for the first time I had previously underestimated her ability. In terms of Reading-born athletes, she is up there with the likes of test cricketers Peter May and Ken Barrington in terms of demonstrating her skills on a national and world stage.

Agree with Neil’s selections? You can make your own choices by filling out the form below. Please note, a selection of these will be published over the next few weeks:

Please try to avoid one-word answers and give a little explanation as to why you have chosen them.

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