The FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™ has seen some superb goalkeeping performances, and among them is a record-breaking one from Chiamaka Nnadozie.
Nigeria entered their second match against Korea Republic under the pressure of knowing that, following a 3-0 loss to Norway, only victory would preserve realistic hope of a top-two finish in Group A. Many coaches would have played it safe, but Thomas Dennerby handed the gloves to the 18-year-old from Imo State, and she responded with a clean sheet in a 2-0 win.
“My coach called me and said, ‘This is your time’,” Nnadozie told FIFA.com. “It was a dream that came true.”
Nnadozie achieved her pre-tournament goal in a performance against Korea Republic that demonstrated poise and maturity beyond her years. She became, at 18 years and 186 days, the youngest goalkeeper to keep a clean sheet at the Women’s World Cup.
“After the match, when I saw the post, I was so happy,” said Nnadozie. “A young girl like me getting a good record, I was so proud of myself.
“I am so proud of the defence. They did great. I know I can’t do it without them – they made it possible for me.”
Nnadozie’s chemistry with the defensive unit illustrated how quickly she has made herself a part of the Nigerian squad. The remarkable calm the teenager displays on the pitch contrasts her infectious personality off it.
“I love playing, joking around with people,” she said. “Whenever I notice you are angry or sad, I will come and do some funny things. I love seeing people around me happy.
”Sometimes when I am not around, they will call me saying, ‘We miss you’. Whenever I come in, when everyone is moody, I will just do one funny thing and they will laugh.”
Culled from FIFA.com