Jill Roord is looking forward to seeing the American football players again, who prevented the Orange from taking the world title in Lyon last year. Then Roord (23) came into a fairly hopeless situation as a substitute within the lines, now – partly due to the experience gained in top foreign competitions – she has grown into a full-fledged basic player.
Roord can still remember it well; the moment she was sent off the bench in Lyon, the Netherlands faced a 1-0 deficit. Everything was still possible. However, when Roord wanted to make her entrance, the score fell 2-0. And with that, hopes for the world title disappeared.
“We just happened to talk about it at the table”, says Roord, who is preparing with the Orange squad in Zeist for the game with ‘Team USA’. “The moment I came in, the 2-0 fell. I was warming up and didn’t see the whole attack. I just saw the shot on goal and the ball fly in.”
In the remaining 20 minutes, with Roord in the team, there was no change in the score. “America is of course a top country and we played a pretty good game”, said the midfielder. “We kept it up for a long time, but created little or nothing ourselves. We hope to do that on Friday.”
‘Feel free on and off the field’
Even before the World Cup it was clear that Roord would exchange Bayern Munich for Arsenal, where they have undergone a strong development. “I feel very free, on and off the field. I can be myself very much and that was less at Bayern. Bayern Munich was quite strict and the trainer is really in charge. There was not really room for my opinion. It boiled down to listening, training, working hard. That was also good for me. But in England I feel a lot more myself. There are no rules, apart from the ground rules. And for the coach it is: football, football , football.”
Roord started the season impressively and scored a hat-trick in both the first and second games. At Arsenal she now plays a lot more attacking than last season, which she likes. “I was actually reached number 10 here, but due to an injury at Lia Wälti, I played a bit more defensively in the beginning.”
A knee injury prevented the six goals from being increased rapidly. Now she is ready again. “I’ve played again. Now and then I still feel it, but every football player has problems with something”, said Roord, for whom a lot has changed at Orange since the summer of 2019. “In principle, I have played almost everything since the World Cup. It was a crazy period with corona and my injury, but I do have the feeling that I am a valuable player at the Orange now.”
The game between the Orange and the United States starts on Friday in Breda at 6:35 PM.