Four times African Best Player advises young kids to give their all and achieve whatever they can in everything they do.
In an interview with dw, the 27-year-old who scored 20 goals to win the Pichichi award in 2021/22 Spanish Primera Division Women debunks any pressure on her and believes her success should be used by kids to improve their careers.
“I know that there are a lot of kids in Africa that look up to me. I just want them to know: be yourself, do your best all the time, win whatever you can win. I’ve been Africa’s best player four times: when I was younger I never dreamed of this. I was only doing my thing.”
“I’m just trying to give hope to the kids in Africa that they can get to the top if they put in their best in whatever they are doing.”
Oshoala will be representing Nigeria in June with a goal to defend their Women’s African Cup of Nations trophy. This will make her a favourite in the running for Balon d’Or. However, she says she doesn’t have her eyes on the Balon d’Or
“I’m just a girl who loves football. I think people out there who see my game would be the ones to decide if I deserve the award. If they say I am good enough, sure. I just want to go out there and score goals; that’s what makes me happy. Whatever award that comes is secondary.” Oshoala told dw.
Barcelona Femeni after having a perfect record in the Primera Division will first need to defeat their Lyon counterpart on Saturday, May 21 before lifting the Champions League. Oshoala expressed her optimism when asked about the final by dw in what will be a poised encounter against the French side.
“Lyon is the team to beat in Europe, we’re not looking for revenge [for the final defeat in 2019], but we want to put up a better show. We don’t want a repeat of the last loss. We want to show the world we’ve improved, a better team than they saw three years ago.”
“Lyon are the favorites. They are trying to regain their position, so I think it is going to be a very interesting game.”
Oshoala who had an excellent start to the season saw her season disrupted by injuries sidelining her for about five months. She hopes to end the season on a high with more goals.
“I have had a rollercoaster of emotions this year. I have laughed, cried and smiled. Mentally it is really draining, but this is professional sport and things happen,” she said. “At the end of the day, I just want to be happy at the end of the season.”
Speaking on the increased competition for women’s football ticket and its general recognition, Oshoala said
“I have to pay more now for family and friends. It is quite expensive, but also this is what you want to see. We always dreamed of getting to this level where tickets are hard to find. Right now you can’t get tickets to the game. I have to spend more, but I love it”