Australia's Emily Van Egmond goes into the game against Equatorial Guinea with much at stake as the teenager seeks to help her team claim their first win at the tournament, following an opening defeat against Brazil. Not that Van Egmond lacks for football pedigree with her father - who was part of the Australia team at the 1988 Olympic Football Tournament - assistant coach for the Joeys at the 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Mexico. FIFA.com met with the 17-year-old where she shared her hopes and expectations about her first FIFA Women's World Cup™.
FIFA.com: Your full national team debut was only last month in a friendly game and here you are going into your second game at the FIFA Women's World Cup. How do you feel about that?
Emily Van Egmond: Obviously I am very nervous at times but I am really enjoying the opportunity that the coach has given me to come out on the field and play, and it has been a really great experience for me so far.
You will turn 18 in less than two weeks and you are obviously one of the youngest players on the squad, how do you handle your school work with football?
I have just finished school actually but I am now in Canberra so I am doing an accredited year, which I will finish at the end of this year and I can get the certificate by sitting for an exam without having to go to school, which works out really well for me.
Your father was a football player, and now coach, so no doubt he shares tips with you?
(Laughs) I always actually tease him that he has never been to a world cup while I have, so I just need to participate in an Olympic tournament and I would beat him. But yes he obviously does share tips and advice with me since he is a coach now and has a lot of knowledge. We sometimes have individual training sessions where he helps me with things that I need to improve on like technique, shooting and fitness. When we are at home we often watch football together on TV. We like to watch Barcelona play especially and he would tell me about players to watch during a game, then ask me afterwards what I think, and tell me about the things that they do which I can do better. So it is definitely great to have someone help me and share with me the knowledge that he has.
Being a men’s coach what does he think about women’s football?
He is really happy about the women’s game growing and the standard of women’s football which keeps getting better and better, and he just thinks it is great that it is the largest growing sport. He always says I should just go out on the pitch to enjoy it and have fun.
You are obviously facing a critical game tomorrow against Equatorial Guinea, so what are your expectations for the match?
We obviously have to win the three points, because we need six points to secure our qualification to the quarter-finals. We watched their game against Norway and I thought both teams had many chances, but their player Anonman would be the real danger. She definitely plays a big part in their squad so we need to keep a close eye on her. We should just try to keep the ball, show some good composure and final touches in the last third, and hopefully we will score some goals.
What do you think of the organisation of the tournament so far?
Fantastic, it is just unbelievable. Everything is really just superb, I have never played in any tournament like this so for me it really is an out of this world experience!