• Millie Bright is part of FIFA FIFPro World11 2020
  • England international Chelsea talks about his place among the best
  • The defender also talks about her World Cup regrets and Olympic dreams

Straightforward and confident, Millie Bright speaks as she plays. This uncompromising honesty has also allowed her to become one of the most charismatic players in the world.

Last month, Bright further confirmed her place among the elite by being elected to the FIFA FIFPro World11 Women, a world eleven decided by players around the world, proving the esteem that her colleagues and rivals have in her. .

England’s Chelsea international, however, never expected to reach these heights at the age of 27. Not very avid of football when she was little, she waited until she was nine to start touching the ball. In her early twenties, when she began to take football seriously at the Doncaster Belles, she was still working alongside.

His move to Chelsea in 2015 marked the starting point of his ascent to the heights of football. Emma Hayes has observed something exceptional in the defender who “has the potential to become the best of all,” according to the technician. Bright made it his main goal, under the leadership of the coach of Blues on and off the field.

In this interview, the central rear of the Lionesses talks about her ambitions, her sources of inspiration, her disappointment at the FIFA Women’s World Cup ™ and this year’s Olympic Games.

Millie, congratulations on your nomination to the FIFA FIFPro World11. What do you feel ?

I was a little surprised to be part of the 11, but also very proud since I work for this kind of awards. No matter what tournament or game I play, I try to do everything to stand out. This is something that I became aware of as I progressed as a player. I have been a candidate for the FIFPro team for several years now and it’s something that is close to my heart because you know that other players vote. There is nothing better than the recognition of the players you have faced.

You have known a gradual rise in recent years. Do you notice this stuff and do you work on it?

Yes quite. I try to compare myself to the best and in recent years I have observed Wendie Renard quite a bit for example. I wondered what she was doing to be so successful and to always be elected in the world 11. This is because she shows consistency in everything she does. She doesn’t just stay on top, she always tries to improve and progress. She is an incredible leader and she often makes the difference in big meetings, whether it is by scoring a decisive goal from a set piece or by pushing her team to always win. It’s a string that I tried to add to my bow: trying to be above the rest, to be one of the players who really motivates the team, both with Chelsea and with the team. ‘England. I tried to improve in defense, but also to add an offensive aspect, whether in terms of possession of the ball or by scoring more goals. I have the feeling that I am making progress in this area. But above all, I want to win titles and Wendie Renard wins all the time. It is for this reason that it is a superb example that I was able to follow.

Renard certainly has some great strengths, but she left the title The Best – FIFA Female Player to a player you know very well. What can you tell us about Lucy Bronze?

Lucy received this award because she is someone who works hard every day since the beginning of her career. As she said in her speech, she is a real competitor and she has the will to win whatever she does. I think this determination to be the best has been a key part of her rise to the level she has reached. If there’s anyone who knows how to improve and achieve their goals, it’s Lucy Bronze. She is one of my inspirations and I’m really happy for her because she so deserves it.

Millie Bright of
 Chelsea has a selfie photo with a fan after the Barclays FA Women's Super League match between Chelsea and Reading at Kingsmeadow on January 05, 2020 in Kingston upon Thames, United Kingdom.
© Getty Images

Two defenders climbed the podium and therefore one of them was voted The Best. Do you think you will ever be able to win this award?

I have it in the back of my head, but I mainly focus on my course. I want to keep improving every day and reach my best level. If, in the end, I tick all the boxes, I don’t see why I couldn’t be a serious candidate. Lucy’s victory this year proves defenders can win, but I’m not obsessed with it.

To end on The Best, Emma Hayes was not voted the best trainer, but how important is she to you and what can you tell us about her?

If I have worked so much for several years, it is probably because of Em. He’s a great trainer and a great person. She knows how to get the best out of the players. When you see Chelsea’s journey over the past few years and the successes we’ve had, it’s because of Em. She’s a born winner and she’s not afraid to make changes if they allow us to open up. doors. This drive to be the best really rubbed off on me and made me believe in my chances and never give up. He’s the best coach I’ve had and I can’t wait to see how far she can take this team.

Are you surprised at the level you have reached in football today considering that you didn’t play – and you weren’t necessarily a football fan – when you were little?

It’s crazy to see how far I’ve come. I started playing soccer when I was about nine years old, I was part-time not that long ago and was really far from where I am now. I like to remember where I came from and what I had to do to reach my level today. I think the experiences I had when I was younger have allowed me to become the player I am today. Things have changed for the better too. When I started I wasn’t sure if I could make a career in football, whereas today girls see that anything is possible if you have the talent and if you work hard enough. Each generation of footballers has a responsibility to continue to make progress and to facilitate the journey for generations to follow. I think we’re doing a pretty good job right now.

To encourage this progression, we see a lot of videos showing the quality of women’s football on social networks. Your superb goal in the Community Shield has created a buzz. Can you tell us a little more?

I think scoring a goal like this at a stadium like Wembley is the pinnacle. The presence of supporters is the only thing that could have made this moment better. But it was still awesome. Girls often tell me to try my luck from afar. JiJi (Ji Soyun) always tells me, “When I pass the ball to you, control and hit!” You just have to be confident. I want to show that this goal was not a fluke and it would be nice if it became a habit and that I was known for that. That said, I think it will be hard to score a better goal than that!

Let’s move on to the 2019 Women’s World Cup. What memories do you have of it? Maybe not the best considering how the adventure ended for you with a red card against the United States in the England defeat in the semi-final) when you played so well before?

Mixed feelings, yes. Hot, I only felt disappointment and anger with myself. But looking back, after having thought about it for a long time, I was able to feel pride for the progress made during this tournament. The red card is a reality, I have no excuse, but it’s football, it happens and other players have found themselves in the same situation. If I could go back, I would turn things around, obviously. If only in the way I contained my emotions and my decision-making because I didn’t need to make that tackle. But I’m proud of the team, proud of having participated in my first World Cup and all the successes that followed. I savor a little more with the passage of time. At first, I was really disgusted and I didn’t feel like we had achieved anything, or even progressed. But with hindsight and with time for reflection, I see what we have accomplished.

The Olympic Games are the next big international tournament. Are you looking forward to maybe making a part of a Great Britain squad in Tokyo?

It would be huge! When I tell the girls who were on the team in 2012, they say it was a unique and amazing experience, with all the different sports and athletes coming together. It’s probably my best goal at the moment and I’m doing my best to be selectable. I have always loved watching the Olympics. No matter the sport, you always say to yourself: “Oh my, it’s the Olympics!” There is something special, a kind of excitement around the Olympics and the great athletes who have been training for four years to achieve it. I would love to be a part of it.

England celebrate after Lucy Bronze of England scores her teams third goal during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup France Quarter Final match between Norway and England at Stade Oceane on June 27, 2019 in Le Havre, France.
© Getty Images

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