Football Express is bringing a detailed list and profile on all Indian Women Footballers. Indian Women National team goalkeeper Aditi Chauhan will be our first brief profile to show off.
The first choice goalkeeper for India has been a big inspiration for newcomers in this beautiful game. There is still stigma remains over ‘how you can do career in Indian football’, ‘you are women’. Then you can look up to Aditi Chauhan to break this stigma.
She currently plays for Gokulam Kerala FC in the Indian Women’s League(IWL) and has been No. 1 for the Indian National team for some time now.
She is currently keeping herself fit at CRPF Academy, Kadarpur, Gurgaon, Haryana due to her father’s transfer there(Inspector General in CRPF).
Aditi Chauhan: Profile, Career, and Stats
The 28-year-old(20 Nov 1992) stopper was born in Tamil Nadu state. She moved to Delhi at the age of 9 and had her early stage-career in football with the Delhi Football team.
She started with Basketball but her coaches advised her to adapt football goalkeeping gloves due to her ball handling.
Aditi moved to England for further studies and joined Loughborough University, England. She completed a Master in Sports Management there and played football for their team.
Soon she tried tryouts with nearby teams and succeeded with Millwall FC(2nd division club). But she couldn’t feature for them due to student VISA rules, which states she cannot play in 1st and 2nd division clubs.
Her coach from Millwall suggested her to give tryouts to the 3rd division club, West Ham United Ladies. She played one friendly game for them and selected.
It was a big moment for her and every Indian football fan. She soon became the first Indian Women player to feature in English Football League. She returned to India in 2018 and played for India Rush for 2018-19. She then joined Gokulam Kerala for the IWL season 2019-20 and won the league with them.
Aditi Chauhan has featured for National Team 15 times since her debut in 2012 and now established herself as the first-choice goalkeeper for us.
Some Interesting Facts:
- Started as Basketball Player
- Holds a Masters Degree in Sports Management
- Black Belt in Karate
- First Indian Women Footballer to play in the English Division
- Won Woman in Football award
- Favorite Players Manuel Neuer and Lionel Messi
- Founded She Kicks Football Academy in Delhi
Statements by Aditi Chauhan:
Aditi Chauhan expressed her thoughts on comparing her experience in European football with Indian conditions:
“We have to accept the fact that the history of football in Europe is very old while the football culture in our country is new. It is very unfair to compare the two. Football is their main port and it will take time to match their standard”
Goalkeeper’s thoughts on India hosting U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022 and 2022 Asian Cup:
“We need parents to be more aware about what you can achieve in sport and especially in football. This (the U-17 Women’s World Cup) will address a lot of people’s concerns,”
“We will not only get players from the World Cup who can represent the country in the 2022 Asian Cup but also it will be an eye-opener for parents who think twice before letting their girl child play the sport if she is interested,”
Aditi also suggested that more clubs in IWL will improve football development:
“I hope that in the coming years we have more ISL and I-league teams putting in a women’s team in the IWL and everyone wants more competition, more players, more teams, more matches throughout the year,”
Aditi also stated that women’s football fixtures can’t accommodate their menstrual cycles, so they need to adapt to it.
“I have seen a lot of players take time off on the first two days of their periods. That has changed now. From the coaches, physios, and technical staff, everyone has banded together to explain to players that rest isn’t needed unless symptoms are severe and we’ve tried to optimise our performance even if we’re on our period.”.
“Having said that, this is an individual choice to make because our bodies, metabolism, symptoms, and thresholds are different. I have played through matches and I’ve played even on my first two days. We can’t afford to keep that as an excuse because fixtures can’t accommodate all our menstrual cycles,”– Aditi Chauhan