By Nik Brumsack

Gilly Flaherty believes a mixture of youth and experience was instrumental in helping Arsenal Ladies to retain their Women’s Super League title.

The defender, just 21 years of age, has cemented her spot in the first team along with 19-year-old central midfielder Jordan Nobbs - while fellow youngsters Danielle Carter and Jennifer Beattie have also forced themselves into boss Laura Harvey’s plans.

That youth is balanced out by experienced figures including Rachel Yankey and Kelly Smith, and Flaherty believes their presence gives the Ladies a perfect blend.

“I think it’s why we do so well - we’ve got that mix. If it was all older players, when they start to retire, we could be struggling a bit,” she told

“We’ve got a good mix. We’ve got older players, players in their prime and then younger ones. We all help each other along and pull each other through.”

Sunday’s title triumph added the latest medal to what is already becoming a vast collection of silverware for Flaherty. And while the centre back was delighted to be crowned WSL champions, she insists her and her team-mates are hungry for more honours.

“We’re pleased to win the league and be crowned the best team in the country but I’m not going to settle for what I’ve won already,” she said.

“I still want to win the Champions League and be on the pitch for a Champions League final.

“There’s still so many more that we can win and we want to keep on winning and winning. We never want to lose.”

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1 Oct 2012