Zambia Women’s national team goalkeeper Hazel Nali has joined other football stars in the country in flaunting the proceeds of their talent after acquiring her Nissan Mirror vehicle.
The shot stopper who plays for army side Green Buffaloes says bonuses from the 2019 COSAFA Cup held in South Africa and the 2019 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (AfCON) held in Cameroon enabled her to elevate her social status by buying a car.
Goal Diggers! Caught up with the 24 year old to talk about her rise in ranks both on and off the pitch.
“I’m proud of myself for buying this car because I bought it through hard work on the pitch. What we got after the COSAFA Cup in South Africa and Women’s AfCON in Cameroon helped me to afford this car and I’m proud of my self. When I started playing football, I didn’t think I will reach this level of buying big things because football was only known for men. Now I am here working even harder and wanting to go higher even on international level. Football makes me happy and I will always think about it when I do something big because of it,’ she said.
Asked about how easy the road has been to her national team player status, Nali mentioned prejudice and minimal support from local male football stars as challenges.
She said the football fraternity has not been very accommodating for women, noting that support from male football stars could change society’s view of women’s football in the country.
“There is a lot of talking about women playing football like we are not real women. But now at least people are supporting us and we are known but we still need more support especially from male footballers because they can make the environment more friendly for us. This sport is for anyone who has love and talent for it, we just need more support. My family is very supportive, they have seen what talent can do,” Nali said.
The soft-spoken footballer who is a lines corporal by rank in Zambia Army also shared her tips in staying fit and relevant to the game amid the global Coronavirus pandemic.
“We are like six national team players here at Buffaloes so when we knock off, we just go for individual training at the Independence stadium. We make use of the terraces and do ball control techniques so that we do not lose form,” summed Nali.