Warriors, superheroes and inspirations

Sunday 10 March 2024 11:00

“A warrior woman".

That was how Manchester United Women attacker Geyse described her mum, when discussing the key inspirations in her life with former footballer-turned-freestyler and Reds fan Kaljit Atwal.

Family is important to our players and, as they explained in their informal chats with Kaljit, influential parents and siblings have had a massive impact on the journey they have been on so far.

"My inspiration since childhood has been my mother," said Geyse. "I have had her as an inspiration since I was a child. She is someone who is always with me.

"She is a person that I always carry with me, every day that I leave home, the time that I spend away, I look back and remember everything that my mother went through. So, the biggest inspiration for me is my mother.

"This thing about bringing the food to our house, her leaving early to go to work to put food in the house. That’s what I take as an example, a warrior woman, who is always with me and did everything she could to put food in the house, for me and for my brothers."

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Defender Victor Lindelof shares this deep respect for his mother, championing the fact she brought him and his brothers up alone and the way she spoke to them as they got older.

"I feel like mums are superheroes,” he said.

"I'm raised by a single mother and she raised four boys by herself," he began. "I think that's quite inspirational in itself.

"I think mostly just the conversations that we had and sometimes through [her] actions as well.

"But just like I said, the communication that we have between us is really important, right?"

Mothers were a common theme when Kaljit was chatting to the Reds about their key inspirations and, while United midfielder Christian Eriksen also cited his mum as key influence in his life, he added that a shared passion for football made his relationship with his older sister even more special.

"I had a look and got help a lot from my mum, who was probably the strong woman I had," he said.

"And then at the time, [my] inspiration, I think, was seeing my sister at the time, who is three years older, who also turns out to be a professional football player."

Our players are striving to inspire future generations, and our Stronger Together campaign empowers them to project those beliefs to our fans and society as a whole.

Jayde Riviere always dreamed of playing for United and, having achieved her aims, she was quick to appreciate the woman who inspired her from the moment she came into the world.

"My mom was always someone that told me to, you know, be strong, be independent, get education and follow what I want to do," explained the Canada international.

"I think growing up with a strong mom like that is somebody that I could replicate. I always wanted to be like my mom.

"[She] was definitely a pinnacle person for me in terms of that representation of an independent woman.

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"The sky's the limit no matter where you come from or who you are.

"She was able to achieve whatever she wanted to. If it was going back to school, even though she has a full- time job and getting that done putting in those hours to do it, she was always someone and is always someone that will never back down to a challenge.

"I think that that was amazing to see and I was able to apply it in the football world in terms of, you know, if I want a goal, if I want to play for Manchester United, I can't just manifest it."