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22nd Aug 2023

World Cup Dreams captures the excitement, the hopes and the dreams of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023. Over the course of this summer, we spoke to members of the Bloomsbury Football community who represent some of the 32 competing nations. By showcasing the dreams of our community, we hope to continue to inspire players & communities to get on the pitch and experience the power of the beautiful game.

Which player from the World Cup inspires you?  

For me, it’s Rafaelle Souza. She plays for Brazil, she’s a defender and she’s the team captain. She inspires me because while she was playing at Arsenal, I used to watch her all the time and her technique is just incredible.


What does this World Cup mean to you?    

It means a lot seeing the women’s game get recognition, especially from younger people.  For example, my little sister, she’s actually watching women’s football now- the tournament has inspired so many young girls. 


How do you feel when you’re on the pitch playing for Bloomsbury?    

Everyone’s just so nice to each other. It doesn’t feel forced, everyone genuinely enjoys being at training.   


What is your football dream?    

I think for me it’s just to keep on getting better. I don’t think there’s really an end goal for me. If I’m doing better in a year’s time than I am today, I think that’s an achievement already. 


Which player from the World Cup inspires you?  

The player that inspires me is Lucy Bronze. Even though I don’t play in that position, she’s a really good player. I think she’s so strong and always ready to bring it when she needs to.  


What does this World Cup mean to you?    

The Women’s World Cup this summer was the first one I’ve watched. It means a lot to see a Women’s World Cup on TV- even if it means staying up until 3 in the morning to watch the games! 


I love that every single player who represents their nation has the opportunity to make history by winning the tournament.   


How do you feel when you’re on the pitch playing for Bloomsbury?    

When I play football, I’m happy. Once I step on the pitch, nothing gets past me. No one can tell me what I can’t do, and even if they did, I wouldn’t listen to them.   


What is your football dream?    

My football dream is to become a professional footballer.   


Which player from the World Cup inspires you?  

Wendie Renard. She’s the French captain, and it’s my dream to become a professional like her. 


 What does this World Cup mean to you?    

For me it means a lot that women’s football is getting more attention, before last year we didn’t really see it on TV or in the media, only men’s football. It’s a huge thing to see women playing football with a lot of people supporting.   


How do you feel when you’re on the pitch playing for Bloomsbury?    

Normally when I get on the pitch I either feel confident or nervous. It really depends on how I’ve played in the matches before!    


What is your football dream?    

My dream is to play for a big team like PSG.   


Which player from the World Cup inspires you?    

Lauren James from England.   


What does this World Cup mean to you?    

I like that players get to show off their talent  


How do you feel when you’re on the pitch playing for Bloomsbury?    

I feel energetic, I never get tired and never get bored because the coaches always give us fun ideas.    


What is your football dream?    

I know I will have to study hard, but my football dream is to become a sports physiotherapist.  

I also felt inspired to play in the FA cup after Bloomsbury gave me tickets to the semis and finals in 2022. I was able to witness Korean players, such as Spurs Korean midfielder Cho So-hyun, who particularly amazed me and inspired me to represent my country in the future.  


Which player from the World Cup inspires you?  

Lucy Bronze from England because of her confidence and the ability to play the ball through. I feel like she’s been a really great asset to England, I have always loved watching her play.    


What does this World Cup mean to you?    

It is really cool to see a lot of women play at a high level and to see women’s football increasing in popularity.   

In the past, a lot of boys would judge us girls for playing football, but now they’re watching women’s football! I feel like people’s attitudes are changing towards the game, so I am really happy about that.   


How do you feel when you’re on the pitch playing for Bloomsbury?    

When I step on the pitch, I feel really happy and feel like I have a lot of freedom. I just feel so open and can really express myself and who I am.   


What is your football dream?    

My dream is to play for England. Hopefully my parents can see me on the pitch- and watch me score a goal!   



Which player from the World Cup inspires you?    

The player that most inspires me the most is Ellie Carpenter. She plays for Australia and plays defence and I really like her because I play defence as well. I think it’s really inspiring to see someone play the same position as you for your country.  


What does this World Cup mean to you?    

I think the Women’s World Cup this summer has been so important. It is so impressive to see the high level of the women’s game on TV and it is great that there is so much more media coverage compared to Women’s World Cups of the past. I think it’s powerful to see so many people in the community get so excited about women’s football.  


How do you feel when you’re on the pitch playing for Bloomsbury?    

I feel very excited when I step on the pitch and play for Bloomsbury-  I love the community and I love the sport. I think it’s just such an amazing feeling when you get to play football with your friends. Being outdoors and playing the sport you love is so much fun.  


What is your football dream?    

My dream is to play in the Women’s World Cup. But my short-term goal is to be able to play around the world. 


From left to right: Colette, Ella-Rose, Lydia, Maya, Esmé, Izzi

Since the Lionesses won the Euros, what are the changes you have seen in London towards Women’s Football?  

 Izzi: The energy towards the women’s game feels so different now. Last summer felt truly game-changing. History was being made. It feels like there is much more attention on games, the players and the specific challenges facing the women’s game – from funding to talking about periods.   

The Lionesses have become household names and role models on a completely new level. People are talking about women’s football now like never before – it feels unstoppable.   

Ésme: I think wider audiences are now seeing Women’s Football as an entity in its own right, and not an add-on. It is great to see people filing into pubs and venues like Boxpark to watch the women’s games. I was at the Emirates for the Women’s Champions League semi-final, which was a record attendance of 60,000. It was the most amazing atmosphere! 

How do you think the Women’s World Cup has inspired young girls?  

Ella-Rose: With the huge Euros success for England, many more girls were inspired to get on the pitch. A huge sense of belonging comes from needing to see it to be it. The Euros put Women ballers on the World stage, meaning thousands of young girls could see themselves in the boots of International players. It provided a new dream for many young aspiring players. I think the World Cup has done this afresh, especially for Black and brown girls. Being able to see the Black, brown and bi-racial players allows you to see yourself as a footballer. Inspired by the huge Jamaican and Nigerian World Cup success, I was inspired and so I joined a team called Inter Melanin FC!   

Lydia: The Women’s World Cup and all the associated promotional material has certainly made me feel inspired so I can only imagine what it means to young girls around the world just starting their football journeys. Giving women’s football the platform it’s starting to receive allows us to demonstrate that we can do just as well as the men (and even better)!   

Brazilian forward and all-around icon Marta Viera da Silva said it best “You know what’s great? When I started, there were no idols in women’s football for me to look up to. That has changed.” Young girls can see that it is very much possible for them to achieve greatness in football. I can’t wait to see how the game develops and upgrades over the coming years.   

Who is your favourite player in the tournament and why?  

Colette: Alessia Russo – she is a very inspiring player, in terms of her competence and also at a young age being able to deliver on big occasions requires so much composure. 

Maya: Hard to choose one, but I really admire Rachel Daly and her journey. In her club career, she’s a prolific striker, but she plays a completely different role for England. She’s an amazing example of putting her team first by embracing the job that’s been given to her and executing to the best of her ability. It’s part of why this Lionesses team has been so successful – you can see they’re all willing to do anything for the good of the collective. Also, as we saw in the Euros, Rachel Daly knows how to have fun, and I think that’s a great quality to have! 

How do tournaments like this shape your experiences as a woman in football?  

Maya: I feel really grateful to be working in football, there’s never been a better time for it. There’s still so much work to do and a lot of change that needs to happen, but there are so many passionate people who are willing to do whatever it takes. I think you see that really clearly with these tournaments. There are so many initiatives from different organisations, and the players themselves are there to compete but they’re also using their platform to push for the resources, or support or coverage that they deserve. It makes it feel like we’re all in this fight together, and that’s very motivating. 

Izzi: There seems to be a lot of positive change in the industry as a whole- more conversations around specific barriers facing women, more opportunities, more funding to female coaches and players. Tournaments like the World Cup always offer a boost in momentum to the conversations about the women’s game. They are also just an opportunity to get behind a team, to become invested and to celebrate – these are some of the best athletes in the world, and it’s amazing to watch them play.   

What are Bloomsbury doing to get more girls on the pitch?  

Ella-Rose: Where to start! Bloomsbury Football are breaking down the many barriers that exist that have made girls feel as though they don’t belong in football. We want girls to feel powerful on the pitch and know that they can take up space in the male-dominated world of football. From supporting them as they learn more about how to train with their menstrual cycle, providing with period products and educational workshops, to showing them potential football pathways, with university visits and trips to SGP. We want our girls to find themselves in spaces that inspire them to push ahead both on and off the pitch, whether that be in the Nike offices, the La Liga offices, at St George’s Park, playing on the pitch at Wembley or Stamford Bridge, we want them to feel as though they belong in these incredible spaces. 

Ésme: Bloomsbury has consistently sought to remove the barriers to girls playing football. Our Girl’s Academy is thriving, and we are sure we can continue growing participation. Working to normalise discussions around periods and address the needs of players is hugely important, and Bloomsbury working with Freeda and putting on period workshops for not only players but coaches is a really good step. It was also so inspiring to see Bloomsbury girls in Nike’s England kit launch.