Barbra Banda from Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank (SRCB) came to the sidelines after training. She took off her boots and put them in her bag before sitting cross-legged on the grass and sharing her story with Xinhua on Tuesday.
The 20-year-old from Zambia is a star in the 2020 Chinese Football Association Women’s Super League, blasting four goals in the first three rounds, and setting off the “Zambian whirlwind” in the Women’s Super League, which is being held in the southwestern city of Kunming from August 23 to October 11.
After the third round of China’s top women’s football league which finished last Saturday, SRCB temporarily ranked second in the standings with three wins in a row. Banda scored in each of the three games.
Cutting into the penalty area and chipping the ball over the goalkeeper, Banda’s offensive talent was a showcase on the pitch.
“I had some experience in Spain. I thought maybe it is time for me to try something new in China,” she said.
At the beginning of the year, Banda transferred from Spain’s EDF Logrono to SRCB, a strong contender for the championship.
“I came here to win the title,” she said.
Banda is obviously getting used to winning.
As the captain of the Zambian women’s football team, she led the team to victory over Cameroon’s national team in the Olympic qualifiers in March, helping her team to book berth in the Olympic Games for the first time in history.
Banda recalled that when she was a little child, her parents worried that football would affect her schooling and thought that football was a game only for boys.
Despite the obstacles, she had to steal shoes from home to play.
“I used to play with little boys, because back then there was no women’s football team in my hometown. You just have to join them if you want to play. People think football is only a game for boys, but I think it is up to you to determine what you want.”
“The situation has to be changed, right? why not me?” she added.