Fieldoo is proud to present eleven women footballers that are still leading the breakthrough of the beautiful side of the beautiful game that happened with the acceptance of women’s football amongst the Olympic sports in 1996.
Only 19 years old, the Latvian goalkeeper experienced football in Germany’s 3rd division and later moved to Finland, where she keeps the ball out of her team’s net. She is currently playing for the first division club GBK.
Sanja is a goalkeeper in a Croatian club Katarina Zrinski. 22 year old footballer, former handball goalkeeper, told us, how she remembers her beginnings: “Ever since I was little I played football with boys. After school I stayed on the field and most of the time I spent on goal. Seventeen years ago I joined a women’s football club Oaza Mladost Selnica. At first I was a player, I played on all positions. It was only later I tried out to be a goalie. The new position was not difficult for me, because I used to be a goalkeeper in handball and I’m not afraid of the ball and strong shoots. The beginning was hard, we had a weak team and I was an inexperienced goalie. We regularly conceded 5 goals in every game.”
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Sanja continued to train and she didn’t give up: “In 2010 I started to play for a little stronger women’s football club Sračinec where I was able to thrive. In the 2010/2011 season I managed to be the goalkeeper with the least goals. During the winter break of 2011 I started to play in a football league for women’s football club Trnje where I had been playing during the season 2011/2012 and a year later we won first place and I was named the best goalkeeper. In 2012 I played for women’s football club Cestica and then moved into the newly formed women’s football club Katarina Zrinski Čakovec where I am still playing. I am currently playing in the second Croatian league for women, we are the first in the standings, and hopefully we will be upgraded to the first Croatian football league for women. In May I spent a week in Iceland in the women’s football club Sindri Hofn where I gained additional skills and knowledge.”
Sanja said for Fieldoo, that she is regularly training with boys: “I can make further improvements like this. I would describe myself as a player who would do anything for her team, and the one who never gives up. I love this game and I can not imagine life without training and matches. When I put on the gloves and boots I’m the happiest person in the world.”
Central right defender Ines is playing for the Slovenian national team and has just moved from Slovenian first division club Jevnica to Iceland’s second division club Sindri Hofn. She is using Fieldoo on a regular basis and this is what she said about it: “I would like to say that Fieldoo is on the one hand a great idea for self promotion for football players and on the other hand great for the presentation of a player’s CV. So for things that are very important for every player. I must say it is “simply the best” that women players can be a part of Fieldoo.”
Ines told us that her career started in the women football club Jevnica, where she played for ten years: “But I always wanted to play abroad, so I took a chance last season and went to play in Iceland. Iceland is a very nice place to be, it is a large country with a small number of inhabitants. Iceland is also a very good place for women football because their league is very strong and developed. My experience in Iceland has been very positive.”
If we move from clubs to the Slovenian national team: “When I was 15 years old I played the first game for the Slovenian U-16 national team. I played for U-19 national team when I made my debut in a qualification tournament for the European championship against the Czech national team. Since I was 18 I have been a member of the first Slovenian national team. We didn’t manage to accomplish great successes, for example to qualify for the European or World cup, but the best moment in my career was playing against England’s national team in a qualification game for the Euro 2013. Just playing against some of the best players in the world was a great success for me.”
Alisa is a right midfielder who played for national team of Bosnia and Herzegovina. With just 26 years she has more than 13 years of experience of playing in clubs in the first league. Her top attributes are great technique and free kicks.
Klára is a 19 years old central midfielder of 1st division’s Slavia Praha. This young Czech player played for U-17, U-19 and A national team, where she is recording new assists into her statistics. There is a bright future for this young player and who knows where she may play after her contract ends in 2014.
21 year old Emilka comes from Poland. She mostly plays in a position of an attacking midfielder, where her top attributes such as technique, dribbling, creativity and speed come into play. Emilka is under contract with Unia Racibórz.
Lisa is one of the most interesting women football players, an attacking midfielder from Norway that experienced football worldwide. “I have been fortunate to play in various countries and I have had good experiences in my career as different countries created different challenges for me as a player,” said Lisa that played in Norway, Denmark and for US’s Boston Breakers.
Lisa explained the differences in football she encountered: “I had originally played in Norway for most of my professional career before I moved on to Denmark, and then to the US. In these countries the playing style provides very different technique and requires different skill sets of a player. A typical team in Denmark focuses a lot on your skills with the ball and keeping the ball in possession of the team. The play is a bit slower, but your ball handling skills become very good. In the US on the other hand there is a very high phase of play, but the ball skills and the focus on keeping the ball in play are lower. I found the challenge of handling the different playing styles to be fun and educating. Norwegian style of play is a bit of a mix between the two.”
A central midfielder and the Croatian national team U-19 player Dunja was playing for the Croatian club Rijeka in the first division and moved to the United States to play for Rocky Mountain College. Her statistics are impressive because of numerous assists for her clubs and national team. Dunja started her footballing career in Croatia and after a high school she wanted to experience something new and improve her football skills: “I first went for a trial in FC Bayern Munich and I passed for the B team but I couldn’t get a college degree there so I choose to come to USA and play soccer here. I started at Rocky Mountain College last year and we were Conference Champions there. But afterwords Stuart Gore, the head coach here at UNOH in Ohio, the team that I am playing for currently, gave me a call and offered me better opportunities and a soccer on a higher level and I took a chance and joined his team. We are currently playing our season and we are ranked number 2 in the league. Comparing football in USA and Croatia I would like to say that there is a big difference for female players. We have better facilities and conditions here in USA than in Croatia. Here it is easier to play professionaly after getting a degree in a university.”
Only 16 years old Ines is an U-17 national team player, whose dream is to become a professional footballer: “I have a dream of playing abroad and of having a successful career.” Ines explained for Fieldoo that Slovenian football is becoming more and more popular, but her dream is to play for the women’s team of Barcelona. She is training really hard to achieve her dreams and she is currently playing for the Slovenian team Rudar Škale. The interesting thing we found on her profile is that she listed that she can play as a left winger, left midfielder and … a goalkeeper.
Damjana is a Slovenian national team striker, she played for selections of U-17 and U-19. She told Fieldoo about her beginnings and what brought her to football: “I played soccer from an early age, I actually started playing with boys in a local team where my father was a coach and where my brother was playing,” said Damjana and remembered: “Well I must say, that actually all this started earlier, not on the field but in the park near my house.”
Damjana explained that boys were always playing football in the park and one day they were missing one player so they called her, because she was the only person there: “So, I must say thank you to boys. They saw that I was actually good and from that day on, I was always invited to play with them. When I started to play I knew that this is what I want to do in my life, even when boys argued that football isn’t for girls.”
“Anyway after playing two seasons in boys’ teams and being top goal scorer I was invited to join girl’s team. For all this time I was playing for the same club for ŽNK Pomurje Beltinci and for the youth national teams of Slovenia,” said Damjana and explained that she always dreamed about playing in another country and so she moved to Croatia to have more opportunity: “ŽNK Pomurje Beltinci in Slovenia has no real competition and so the games were easier.”
The player of Katarina Zrinski club had other offers but she is finishing high school, so the transfers will have to wait. Football is her passion; she loves it and wants to spread this love to other girls and boys.
Striker from Germany with top attributes in teamwork, speed and aggression. Giustina explained to Fieldoo what the status of women’s football in Germany is: “Football is the most popular sport in the country and women football has become more and more popular in the past years. We have the world’s best league in Germany, the “1. Bundesliga”.”
Giustina explained that everything is really professional, but: “You train almost every day with your team, but I must admit that there is still a big difference comparing women’s and men’s football. You can’t live from the money you get, so you have to work as well and the stadiums are not full.”
The player of Herforder SV is positive about the future of women’s football all over the world. She explained that she decided to be a professional footballer a few years ago: “I have been playing football my whole life and I love it, so I decided to work hard everyday to reach my dream of one day, to play in the first division.” It’s a long way Giustina explained but her motto is: “Never give up on your dreams! You have just one life so make it count. Live for nothing or die for something!”
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