ZHAYD Harbin is only 19 but is wise beyond his years.

It's this perspective that has earned the youngster the captain's arm band at Nerimbera Magpies in 2014.

In only his third season in the top grade, Harbin knows how important it is the club retains the current crop of youngsters in the Central Queensland Premier League.

It's an approach which has seen Frenchville win the Wesley Hall Cup in 2013 and lead the 2014 competition at the halfway mark.

Harbin is surrounded by players still in their early teens, who he says will be invaluable to the club in the future.

Along with 19-year-old Harbin, there's goalkeeper Jeffrey Stenhouse, 19, defenders Josh Richardson, 17, Ziah Carr, 16; right-back Walyson Braz Pinheiro, 17; and Gustavo Braz, 19.

"We have got a really young squad which we need to keep together for the next few years," Harbin said.

"Frenchville did the same. They had a young squad and they all stuck together, built those combinations and now look at them."

It's his youthfulness, and his ability to connect to not only the younger players, but the club's senior staff as well that has earned him the on-field leader's role this season.

CQ Football

ROUND 9

Frenchville 6 def Emerald Eagles 0 at Jardine Park

Southside United 2 def Capricorn Coast 1 at Apex Park

Clinton 15 def Berserker 0 at Elizabeth Park

Nerimbera Magpies 2 drew with Bluebirds United 2 at Pilbeam Park

LADDER: Frenchville 21, Southside United 18, Clinton 16, Bluebirds 11, Nerimbera 11, Capricorn Coast 10, Central 8, Emerald Eagles 6, Berserker 0.

But, Harbin admits he wasn't sure whether he was cut out for the role.

"I did (hesitate) a little bit," he said when approached by coach Finn McKenzie. "Obviously it was a new thing for me. I'd never been captain before, even in my juniors.

"I had a talk with Finn and (club stalwart) Sterling Maguire about what was expected of me, and it's just about setting an example and being a level headed player on the field.

"I just try to lead by example."

Harbin and his Magpies' teammates managed a 2-2 draw with Bluebirds on Saturday in Round 9 of the CQ Premier League.

Nerimbera led 1-0 early thanks to a crafty through-ball from Nerimbera star Israel Souza, which Braz finished off before Bluebirds equalised.

It proved to their downfall as Nerimbera failed to capitalise after Bluebirds went a man down.

"We didn't really keep that intensity up after that first goal," Harbin said.

"The draw result, it was disappointing just because of the way the ladder sits at the moment.

"But I can't really fault the way the team played," Harbin added.



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