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Rebecka Blomqvist: 'When you win titles, you want more'

March 8, 2023

Wolfsburg are set for the most crucial phase of their season as they push for glory in both the Bundesliga and the Champions League. Rebecka Blomqvist told DW that the team are excited about the challenges ahead of them.

Rebecka Blomqvist, in a green Wolfsburg kit
Rebecka Blomqvist moved to Wolfsburg after her Swedish club ceased operationsImage: Norina Toenges/Sport Press Photo/ZUMA/picture alliance

Wolfsburg face a crucial nine-day period in late March when they travel to Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga in between their two-legged Champions League quarterfinal clash against Paris Saint-Germain.

The pressure of expectation to sweep aside all that come before them seemed to overcome the team as they lost 2-1 against Hoffenheim in the league on March 4 their first defeat this season across all competitions.

This allowed Bayern to move to within two points of the league leaders but rather than being daunted by the challenges ahead, Wolfsburg forward Rebecka Blomqvist could not hide her excitement.

"This is what you wait for," Blomqvist told DW. "The big games. We know every game is important but it is now coming down to performing in these high-pressure games and we're all really excited.

"When you win titles, you know what it feels like, and for the whole season we have been striving for the feeling of winning another title. That's enough motivation."

A new challenge

Blomqvist signed for Wolfsburg during the 2020-21 winter break after her Swedish side, Kopparbergs/Goteborg FC, were dissolved just a month after winning their maiden league title, resulting in all senior players being released from their contracts. 

Although the move came about in less-than-ideal circumstances, the striker felt it was the right time to test her skills in the Bundesliga.

When Tommy Stroot was appointed as Wolfsburg's head coach before the start of last season, it led to an evolution of Blomqvist's game. 

Her role changed from being an out-and-out striker into being deployed on the wing, as a No. 9 or a No.10 as and when needed.

"I knew moving to Wolfsburg was a big step but I was also ready to see if my qualities as a football player were good enough," the 25-year-old explained.

"Playing in different positions has helped develop me as a player. You learn new qualities and it puts different demands on you as a player.

"When I was (a) striker I came towards the ball, but often I would just play it backwards. Now, I have a better feeling for when I can turn and make a pass that could lead to a goal."

Champions League drought no issue

Four goals in 15 appearances from the forward contributed to Wolfsburg claiming the league and German Cup double in 2021-22 but they fell short in the Champions League, bowing out at the quarterfinal stage to Chelsea.

Although the side have recently made it to three finals, losing to Lyon in 2016, 2018 and 2020, they haven't won Europe's top club competition since lifting back-to-back titles in 2013 and 2014.

When asked about Wolfsburg's almost decade-long Champions League-trophy drought, Blomqvist's response was to the point.

"We have always had faith in ourselves," she said. "Even if we haven't lifted the trophy previously with this team, we always believe we can."

Being a role model still a shock

Rebecka Blomqvist celebrates with her fists clenched
Rebecka Blomqvist has scored four goals for SwedenImage: Danny Lawson/empics/picture alliance

Undoubtedly winning silverware is a driving force for Blomqvist but, already an experienced player, she sees it as her responsibility to show younger teammates that being a professional footballer is a viable job prospect.

Having spent the first 15 years of her life playing football for fun, it was only when she was drawn into the national setup that she saw a path to making her passion into a profession.

When she earned her first contract and salary at the age of 17 at Kopparbergs/Goteborg FC, the reality of her dream coming true hit home. She often thinks back to that moment, something that helps keep her grounded.

"I'm very lucky to be doing what I loved as a child, and still love, as work," she said. "It is still hard for me to understand that I am a role model but I'm starting to appreciate it and it is driving me even more.

"What we do every day, how we talk about football, about what young boys and girls can achieve, it's important.

"When you hear that young girls are looking up to us, it also makes us realize it's important to keep showing them that becoming a professional football player is possible."

For the next few weeks though, Blomqvist's priorities will be focussed solely on helping Wolfsburg stay in the hunt for three pieces of silverware, including the German Cup, at least through the end of March.

"We're ready!"

Edited by Chuck Penfold.