Behind the scenes of some of the top names in European women’s football with the latest series from Goal Click ahead of the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 final.
IMAGO curated coverage from UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 here.
“Our new Goal Click series for the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 takes us truly inside the footballing worlds of top women’s footballers as they prepare for one of the biggest tournaments of their lives. By giving players the power, freedom, and control to capture their own story, we aimed for a real and intimate behind-the-scenes view into their preparation with both club and country.” , Matthew Barrett, Founder of Goal Click told IMAGO.
“We collaborated with twelve international women’s footballers from across the competing Women’s Euro nations and asked them to document their journey leading up to the tournament – finishing club seasons, playing in cup finals, national team training camps, and international friendlies.”
The series gives the opportunity to hear first hand accounts from female footballers both in the weeks leading up to the EUROs and to learn about their general journey into professional football. Why did you want to shed light on their stories?
The women’s game is riding a wave, and fans getting to know the players more deeply can only help the game progress even further.
The photos take us into places we do not often see – from match day moments to team bonding and relaxation. The powerful stories of the players show how far women’s football has developed in Europe since 2019, but they also show us how much more potential there is in the women’s game.
We tried to collaborate with players who had an interesting perspective and who were enthusiastic to tell their own story in a creative way.
What did you learn from the players that were most influential to you throughout the project?
It remains true that most women’s footballers have overcome huge obstacles and challenges to make it to the top – and they really deserve to be supported in a better way by clubs, federations, and sponsors. The number of ACL injuries also remains astonishing.
There is not one standard journey to become a professional women’s footballer – the different and unconventional ways in which our storytellers arrived at this point in their career is always interesting.
In the back of the mind of every player is what they will do after their career, and the focus on education and planning for the future is ever-present. But there is a real confidence that the women’s game is developing strongly, and the next generation of players will reap the benefits.
After being postponed last year due to the pandemic – this year’s Women’s EUROs has already broken attendance records. In your opinion, what do you hope the future of women’s football will look like?
Hopefully one day a Goal Click series on women’s football will have less stories of historic challenges, obstacles, and barriers – and women will have the same equality of opportunity as men to be professionals in more countries.
I hope for a future with big, consistent match attendances at both club and national level. If there is one single way to support the growth of women’s football – go watch matches in the stadium. It is that simple.
I hope for a future where more sponsors actually invest in the game. The brands who do sponsor the game already stand out so much because they are still in a very uncluttered space.
I hope for a future where the gulf between big nations (like England, USA, and Germany) and smaller nations around the world does not increase too much. I could see a risk of the game becoming very unequal between nations.
Nicole Billa is a striker for the Austrian women’s national team and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim Frauen in the German Bundesliga.