Having now played with Janine Beckie for a season and a half, I thought it was time I sat down with City’s number eleven to find out more about her journey to the North West.
Easily one of the most athletic teammates I've had, her willingness to run and work hard is truly impressive.
Away from the pitch, her love for cooking, coffee and Canada is unrivaled as well as her enthusiasm and positivity in everything she does.
American-born Beckie first started playing football at the age of four alongside her older siblings during an era when the USA was home to some of the biggest names in women’s football:
“I was a super active young person, I played every sport you can think of as a kid and I started playing football because all three of my older siblings played and it is one of those sports that everyone seems to try when they are young.
“I grew up in an era of women’s football stars in the US, my heroes were the 1999 Women’s World Cup winners. Being raised in the USA, those were the Women who everyone wanted to be like.”
A very athletic child and teenager, Beckie knew from a young age she wanted to pursue a career in professional sport but initially wasn’t sure which sport it would be.
Her decision to embark on a football career has undoubtedly paid off as she now finds herself at one of the biggest clubs in the world, having represented Canada at the Olympics in 2016 and World Cup 2019.
Deciding to make the move across the Atlantic was a no brainer for the Canada international:
“I had it in my mind that I wanted to play overseas at some point in my professional career and what footballer wouldn’t want to experience culture in England?
“What drew me the most to City is the style of play, level of coaching and players, and of course the insane facilities.”
Beckie adjusted to life in England quickly and became an important member of the team, most notably scoring the winning penalty in the Continental Cup Final in her first season, before winning the FA Cup a few weeks later.
However, Beckie’s career is not without its setbacks as she describes the severe disappointment of not making Canada’s World Cup squad in 2015:
“I was one of the two last cuts from the World Cup roster for Canada.
“That was mentally one of the most difficult things I have endured in my career, having trained with the team every day for six months and then to be told I would not be going was tough.”
Beckie explained how this decision spurred her on to come back stronger and enjoy the proudest moment of her career only 12 months later:
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“It was also the most motivated I had ever been in my football life to make it back.
“The next summer, I made the Olympic team as a starter, tied for most goals at the tournament and became an Olympic medalist. Things really came full circle.”
Boasting an impressive 70 caps and 31 goals for Canada, the 25 year old still has many ambitions for the next few years:
“Continue to develop my game and win the domestic trophies and Champions League. Prepare to win gold at the Olympics next summer and continue to fight for the advancement of the women’s game.”
It is clear Beckie embraces and appreciates everything that comes with being a professional footballer.
Working so closely with her, I’m always impressed how she constantly drives herself to improve in every session as well as motivating others around her, always going the extra mile on and off the field of play.