- Norway's Karina Saevik is making her World Cup debut
- The 23-year-old is simultaneously completing her degree
- Her studies to become a teacher continue in France
By Philip O'Connor with Norway
Norway’s Karina Saevik is making the most of her time at the FIFA Women's World Cup France 2019™ in every possible way. The young forward made her competitive debut against the hosts, and she is also using her spare time to catch up on her studies to become a teacher.
After four caps in friendlies, the 23-year-old Kolbotn striker took her place on the right wing as her side suffered a narrow group stage 2-1 loss to France in Nice. She also came on as a substitute in the 2-1 win over Korea Republic that secured second place in the group for Norway and a last-16 tie against Australia.
Shortly after playing against France, Saevik was back hitting the books in her hotel room as she tries to strike the perfect balance between her soccer dreams and her desire to get her degree from Oslo Metropolitan University.
“Luckily I have a few friends in my class who can help me out when I haven’t been to lectures myself, and my teachers have been very good in terms of helping me, moving things around and fixing things for me,” she told FIFA.com.
Saevik will soon be qualified to teach children between the ages of 10 and 15. She is one of a number of players in the squad who are currently furthering their education, with defender Synne Skinnes Hansen studying mathematics and physics at Oslo University, while goalkeeper Cecilie Fiskestrand is taking a sports management course.
Most of the players in the national team squad receive a stipend from the country’s football association which supplements any student grants or payments they might receive from their clubs.
For the last six months, Karina has been balancing her soccer career with her college thesis, which meant fitting in her writing and research around training sessions and games with her club, as well as preparing for the World Cup with Norway.
“Most days at home we train in the late afternoon so I study in the morning, but sometimes we train at ten in the morning and three in the afternoon, so I do it between training sessions,” she explained.
“If I get the chance to be a full-time professional I can postpone my studies. I’ll stay in school as long as I can, but if I have to choose, I’ll prioritise the football.”
Skilful and strong with an eye for goal, Saevik has caught the eye of many with her two appearances at this World Cup. It would not be a surprise to see her make a move abroad before the end of the summer.
For now though, she is glad to have her studies as she and her team try to make it as far as possible at France 2019.
“It’s great to have a way of spending time other than just watching Netflix,” she said.
Fans interested in attending the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019 can still purchase tickets for the tournament via www.fifa.com/tickets, as well as via ticket booths located at stadia for remaining matches still available to the general public.