Adding to that achievement is that Micah, who is “very outgoing and not at all shy”, was relatively isolated and uncomfortable in Norway because of pandemic lockdowns.

And while she struggled for W-League games from 2016 to 2019, Micah went and played 84 times for the UCLA Bruins in the US college system, finishing her career there ranked second in saves (248), third in clean sheets (36) and third in wins (62).

Her Matildas high points have also been from left field. She was first picked in a squad from relative obscurity by former coach Alen Stajcic at the 2017 Tournament of Nations in the US, replacing the injured Lydia Williams. Then she made the 2019 World Cup squad off the back of US college form, which is a rarity. Many thought there were others ahead of her for that squad, including the likes of Melbourne Victory keeper Casey Dumont who had an outstanding W-League campaign that season.

“It surprised a lot of people because I hadn’t played W-League in four years,” Micah said. “Maybe they were saying, ‘Who’s Teagan Micah?’

“I thought I’d be too out of sight, out of mind in the US. There was stigma that it would make it harder to play Matildas.

“I was like, ‘Bugger it, if I don’t like it I will come home.’ And I went and it was the best thing and I learnt if you’re good enough you get picked.”

Now she’s back with a psychology degree and plenty of on-field experience thanks to taking a chance in the US college system, which is an unusual place for an Australian national team aspirant to go.

“I wasn’t really happy where I was in terms of loving the game when I was younger in 2015,” Micah said. “Some teammates from WSW encouraged me to go over there.

“I’m glad I did. Hopefully more go to there and do it, get your degree and play.”

Teagan Micah encourages others to develop their game in the US college system.

Teagan Micah encourages others to develop their game in the US college system.

Matildas insiders and her City coach Rado Vidosic think Micah could make it to the No.1 spot by the 2023 Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, when current No.1 Williams will be 35.

“If she continues like this she will not only maintain her position as a Matilda but she will push for the number one spot [by 2023],” Vidosic said.

Loading

Micah dreams of such a day.

“Every day we start our ‘keepers film session there’s a picture of the W-League trophy and in the top corner the Olympics [logo] and the 2023 World Cup,” she said.

“It’s short-term goals that will get you there though. You can’t always be thinking seven months [Olympics] or two years [World Cup] down the track.”

Most Viewed in Sport

Loading



Source link

Categories: Daily Updates

0 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *