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When Dani met Natze

PHOTO: A relaxed Angerer has enjoyed her Australian experience | Credit: Courtenay Grant-Wakefield Images


Nadine, how does it feel to have played your first W-League season and have helped the Brisbane Roar to the grand final?

“Good!”

Short and concise.

It’s the confident tone in her answer and the broad smile that shoots across her face, that shows a sincerity and a directness about her quick and short response.  No further elaboration needed here.

Next question. This could be a very short interview, but it isn’t.

Angerer is actually very excited about pulling the gloves on for her Roar team mates, this Sunday against the Melbourne Victory, in Season Six’s finale.

“I am very excited to play this weekend,” she said.

“As a goalkeeper, I always have to stay focused; no matter if it’s a regular fixture or a grand final.”

“My job is the same.  Even on easier games, it only takes one ball to get past me and it can change the whole result.”

On the pitch Angerer is the consummate professional but off the pitch it can be another story.  Behind the serious demeanour, those who have grown close to the 2013 FIFA World Player of the Year describe her as “a big dag!”

No airs, conceit or arrogance? quite the opposite actually.

Observing her at team trainings dancing around her goalkeeping buddy, Kate Stewart (who Angerer describes as “a top chick”), Angerer exudes an approachability and a larrikinism that entertains and disarms any shred of seriousness.  Pre-training she pokes fun at the girls as they conduct media interviews, yelling out jibes in the background.

However after the warm up or upon a whistle blow of a match, it is all business.

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The German National Team captain pervades a steely focus and it becomes very clear to all, that she is ready to work.  Ready to play.  Ready to save the day, if needed.

So Nadine, let’s talk about Kate Stewart.

Instantly Angerer’s eyes light up.  It is no secret of the special bond that these two goalkeepers have shared this season.

Arguably, Stewart’s best games have been in the No.2 position under Angerer (or besides), having had several minutes to step up (whilst Angerer was injured or away).  Stewart was definitely equal to the task and even though Stewart’s team mates have suffered inconsistent form this season, she has not.

“Stewy is such a great goalie and a person,” Angerer enthused.

“This season has been really good for the two of us, because we have both had a fair chance to share the goalkeeping duties for the Roar.”

“I will miss her a lot and I really wish I could take her to every team that I am in!”

Apart from ‘Stewy’ what else will Angerer be telling her German compatriots about the W-League?

“This is a very good league and it has so much potential. I would recommend it to any international player to try and come to play.”

“The FFA really needs to support it more though, because it really is a great product.”

Did you hear that FFA?  The world player of the year has spoken.

Having enjoyed her time here, the million dollar question is will Angerer be making her way back to our sunny shores next season?

Typical of the free spirit and the carefree attitude Angerer has towards life, she is non­committal – at this point.  The 35 year old dearly wants to return for the Brisbane Roar again but admits to not making any footballing commitments until closer to the time needed to make that decision.

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“I really don’t know.  I like to travel and I usually only decide as the end of a competition is nearing.  But yes, I would love this opportunity again!”

Good news for our W-League…and the Roar.

Football aside, the happy go-­lucky traveller has also enjoyed the chance to see Australia with Byron Bay (NSW) and Margaret River (WA) at the top of her list to return to and seek some ‘down time’ in.

“I just love those places so much.  They both have such an earthy vibe to them and the people are so friendly.”

Perth Glory… you heard it here first.

Whatever the result on Sunday, Australian fans and players would agree that it has been an honour to have a player of such calibre come and play in our domestic league.

The exposure for the W-League across the globe, especially around the announcement of Angerer’s Ballon d’Or, was invaluable.

The vibe around Brisbane especially? as locals and hardened A-League fans stood up and took notice of this ‘female footballing legend’ residing and playing in the neighbourhood.

This moment was immeasurable.  Conversations and social media lit up and a much needed injection of W-League exposure was blasted out across print and twitter feeds around the world.

So thanks Natze; you are always welcome to come back anytime.


Our Brisbane photographer Courtenay Grant-Wakefield had some fun shooting with Nadine Angerer.
Copyright: CGW Images

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DANI BRADY

Dani is TWG’s Brisbane Roar correspondent

Follow Dani on Twitter: www.twitter.com/danoz75

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