Ada Hegerberg’s Ballon d’Or reactions echoed class she shows on pitch | Eni Aluko

The Norwegian’s powerful, inspiring speech gave me goose bumps and the award’s worthy winner dealt with Martin Solveig’s casual sexism magnificently

When I was a young girl I had to deal with people calling me weird and strange because I spent so much time around boys playing football. However I am not alone – that seems to be a regular theme when you speak to many of the great female professional footballers in the world about their journey to where they are now. It is not free of adversity and it is challenging having to justify your talent in what has been considered a man’s sport for centuries.

I think the quicker we tell young girls who dream of playing professionally that they should believe in themselves, the more prepared they will be for the world of pro sport. Which is why Ada Hegerberg’s speech at the Ballon d’Or ceremony on Monday was so powerful.

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via Football | The Guardian