Futsal is still an emerging sport in England, and as we approach the club's second birthday, it's hard to think of players as having bags of experience. However, in this short time, some young players with very bright futures have begun to emerge. With only a handful of games left of the 2022/23 season, if you want to see them, you'll have to come to the court soon. These talented players have been making a bigger impact as weeks go by, and we are very excited for what they will bring in the 2023/24 season.
Meet the players!
Name: Morrigan Delaney
Mo joined the Aztecs at fifteen, coming over to us from Wessex. Having played futsal with boys since she was very young with Wessex, Mo now needed an adult women's team to play for. With cat-like reflexes, the young stopper can jump, spring, and bend across the goal to make a vast array of top saves. Her biggest strengths are from close range, being able to save shots like she saw it before it happened.
Mo first played for the Aztecs in a friendly against Genesis while still fifteen, and later starred in the silver medal performance at the Littlehampton 6v6 tournament, saving four penalties in the semi-final shootout.
Later that summer, Mo provided this excellent assist for Rebecca Moody in this friendly against the England Deaf team.
Delaney made her first competitive futsal appearance versus Bedford, aged just sixteen years and four days, in NFS Tier Two South.
These are some of the saves Mo made during her competitive debut, but that wasn't all...
That's right. An assist on her debut, as a fly keeper. She also nearly scored! Against this top side, she's making saves, playing fly, creating goals.
The very next week, at sixteen years and eleven days, Mo was in the first team squad for NFS Tier One, where the opponent was Hartpury, the stage was St. George's Park, and the audience was BT Sport.
A week later, she's back playing in Tier Two, this time against Stevenage, showing us her skills as a fly keeper. What confidence!
Mo finally scored a couple of goals herself, after some injuries meant she was needed on court, scoring this brace against Cambridge.
Playing deputy to captain Lauren Sayler in the Aztecs net, Mo has been gaining more and more NFS Tier One experience as the season has gone by, getting time against Hartpury, Birmingham WLV, Bolton, and London Helvecia. Described as a prodigy, we're excited to see just how far Mo can go.
Name: Hannah Walker
Hannah joined the Aztecs at sixteen and has grown immensely in that time. She is a strong, fearless competitor, while being very skilful and intelligent on the court. joining too late for the 2021/22 season, Hannah's first minutes on the court came in a friendly against Genesis.
Hannah featured in the summer 6v6 tournament at Littlehampton, scoring a goal on her way to the silver medal, making Hannah Walker one of only a handful of players to score for the Aztecs both on grass and on the court.
Starting the 2022/23 season with the reserve team, we knew it wouldn't be long until Hannah would be featuring more frequently in the first team.
Later in the summer of 2022, Hannah scored more goals, including two versus Stevenage, and two more versus Genesis.
After much waiting, Hannah's competitive debut eventually came, aged sixteen, against familiar opponents London Genesis in NFS Tier Two South. She impressed during that game, bagging a brace, demonstrating good skills and cool finishing.
Hannah continued impressing, scoring this goal against Bedford.
And also this one against Reading.
Strength, skill, intelligence, good technique, she's quite the package! Some good goals and a couple braces, and finally a hat-trick against Cambridge.
Throughout the season, Hannah began to earn more minutes of first team futsal, playing against Hartpury, London Helvecia, Birmingham WLV, and Bolton. Yet to score in Tier One, she has provided this assist for Kayleigh Tonks against Helvecia.
With no prior futsal experience, Hannah also plays for AFC Portchester, and is studying at the Hampshire FA Academy. A serious player with a high ceiling and plenty of ambition.
Hannah can be both a blunt object to batter through, or a scalpel for precision. A great player to have in Aztecs colours!
Name: Leah Harris
Leah Harris joined the Aztecs at the beginning of the 2022/23 season. Playing her football at Poole Town, Leah came through the youth setup at AFC Bournemouth. Her first goal for the club came in a friendly against the England Deaf team, as her mis-hit shot deceived the keeper, finishing off what was a good team move.
Leah's first competitive appearance was in the reserve team, against Tier Two South opponents, where she scored six goals on her debut.
That fifth goal being our favourite, so we're going to show it again.
A week after her debut, Leah was on the court for the first team in Tier One versus reigning champions Birmingham WLV.
Leah continued playing reserve games while getting minutes in the first team, until she reached the maximum amount of Tier One games and graduated to the first team, as per league rules, with Mo Delaney and Hannah Walker. Her next goals came against Reading Royals in Tier Two South.
Just look at this top corner strike to finish off this team move, assisted by Hannah Walker.
As is quite evident, Leah has great dribbling ability, aided by her speed. Which can be seen to great effect creating this goal in a friendly match against Rushmoor.
Leah's performances in NFS Tier One have so far provided two assists, including this great team move to set up Alicia Povey.
And here's her assist for Rebekah Tonks against Bolton, which the commentator incorrectly credited to Kayleigh Tonks.
We can't wait to see the seventeen year-old Leah Harris shine even brighter in the FA NFS.
Name: Jessica Ebhodaghe
Jess spent last season at London Genesis in NFS Tier Two South, joining the Aztecs when she moved to Southampton to study. In Genesis colours, she did manage to score against the Aztecs in the first competitive meeting between the sides.
Jess made her first competitive appearance for the Aztecs against her old teammates at Genesis, and found the net, bundling the rebound from a Moody shot over the line.
Jess' second competitive appearance in Aztecs colours was for the first team in a match against reigning champions Birmingham WLV. The big names on the court did not phase her, as she got stuck in, showing great physical qualities against the opposition.
Easily the best moment for Jess so far as an Aztec was her last minute goal against Hartpury in the cup. A late sub, patiently waiting all game to come on, she scored with her first touch.
This last gasp goal brought the game to 3-2 to our opponents, and keeps the cup tie alive as we head into the second leg. An intelligent and hard-working player, we love having Jess at Southampton.
Name: Ruby Allen
The youngest player so far to represent the Aztecs, she is the only player born in 2007 to have made an appearance for the club. Ruby joined the club in early 2023, and has so far been limited to only a few short minutes against London Helvecia and Hartpury. She has looked excellent in training, and did this at her first session after joining the club...
A lot of bravery to come into a new club and do this against Tier One Players. In last week's friendly against Rushmoor, she was voted Aztecs' player of the match. She only provided the one assist, but her excellent attacking play deserved much more.
These are five teenagers to watch out for. Their potential is high, and we love watching them play. We hope their performances bring you as much joy as they bring us.