SIDELINE CHAT

Interview with Galway and Ireland’s Méabh De Búrca

At what age did you start playing? I was 3 or 4, my first memories are playing soccer on the green with my family and neighbours.

Do you remember your first game? No, but I remember playing games in primary school (Bushypark ) and winning the All-Ireland.

What was your first club? I joined Salthill Devon when I was 12, when they started their girls' section. There were no other girls’ teams in Galway at the time so I had to wait years before playing my first competitive match. SDFC was vital for my development and I will always be grateful for the impact the club had on me.

What is your ideal position and why? Anywhere except goalkeeper

Who inspired you when growing up/ and now? Sonia O’Sullivan was inspirational, particularly winning silver in the Sydney Olympics. Roy Keane was my favourite player growing up.

Did you also aspire to play at the top level? Yes, I was lucky to get to do so for over ten years

What do you particularly like about your sport? The people I’ve met and the opportunities it has given me... the coaches I’ve been fortunate enough to have learnt from and the friendships I’ve made.

Greatest influence/role model? My family as they have given me endless support and guidance.

Greatest success, or one that always remember the most? Winning the FAI cup with Galway and playing in the UEFA cup in Bosnia. It was a trip to remember.

Favourite memory? My first international cap against Holland in Amsterdam.

Fiercest opponent/s? Abby Wambach and the USA. America are the standard-setters in women’s soccer.

If you were not playing soccer, what sport would you want to play? I play GAA too, but athletics would be my next choice of sport.

What do you do to relax? Go for a long run.

Favourite sports person? Katie Taylor – she is a phenomenal athlete and her achievements speak for themselves. I played with her on the Irish squad.

One to watch for the future is Emily Fitzgerald, a Salthill Devon player. She is only young, but has limitless potential.

Best aspect of lockdown. Spending time with my family.

Worst aspect of lockdown. Cancelling the around the world trip I had planned to start in March.

 

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