Introducing Mayumi Pacheco

This week had the pleasure of interviewing up-and-coming England football star, Mayumi Pacheco. The U20 national side’s left-back is one of the game’s biggest young talents and is sure to soon be fired into the limelight.

Currently representing Doncaster Rover Belles L.F.C, Maz braved the snow and travelled to Sheffield to fill us in on all things football and University life. At just 19, she has already achieved a lot and is certainly one to be watched! Find out more about her in the below video.

England Kit Launch

Maz’s run in the first-team for Doncaster Belles at such a young age has seen her shoot to prominence. Her side, managed by former Leeds coach Neil Redfearn, are currently top of the Women’s Super League 2. The side are currently unbeaten after ten games and they appear to be the champions-elect.

The left-back’s form has seen her on track to be entering the senior set-up sooner rather than later, and an invite to a recent prestigious event seemed to confirm that….

Prior to the interview, we had the chance to catch up with Maz at Nike’s England 2018 kit launch in London. For someone who has played against household names such as Fran Kirby, you wouldn’t expect her to be ‘star struck’ easily. Meeting Jordan Henderson and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain did leave Maz in awe, however.

“I was stood there, and I was like ‘Oh my god – Henderson! Chambo! I’m with actual professional footballers”. Maz wasn’t just there to be a fangirl, however! With fifteen international appearances to her name, she can confidently consider herself to be a top-level footballer, too.

Maz in fact used to play for the same club as some of her idols. She left Liverpool Ladies FC at the beginning of the season however in order to pursue more playing time. Now a regular fixture in the Doncaster Belles line-up, Maz can dream of receiving her full international debut.

Thoughts on new England manager Neville

After such debate regarding equality between male and female athletes, the appointment of Phil Neville as the next England manager opened up the question as to whether this was a positive move for the women’s game. Maz revealed to us that she thinks he will put his own ‘spin on the team’.

“He’s got experience as a player and that’s really all you need. He’s played at the highest level”. Maz’s faith in the new coach seems to be justified. Neville’s reign got off to the perfect start with a 4-1 win against France in the SheBelieves Cup on Thursday. A commendable draw with Germany followed on Sunday, which leaves the side within touching distance of taking the trophy home.

The tournament might have come too soon for Maz, but Neville will surely have noticed her performances this season. Maz kept a clean sheet this weekend as her team hammered Villa, which left them three points clear. More of the same, and a senior cap can’t be far away!

Maz Pacheco

From the Pitch to the Lecture Hall

As well as competing at a high level, Maz studies Law at The University of Sheffield. During the interview Maz reflected on her love for Law when growing up. “I’ve always had a secret love for law, even growing up from a young age I’ve always put Law & Order on”.

Her main aspiration is to work in law alongside her football.

When asked if she would link her studies with her sport by working for the FA or Agencies within the game, she responded “I think if I got the opportunity I wouldn’t turn it down, I’d grab it with both hands”.

Maybe after her playing career we will see Maz negotiating contracts with players and clubs as a football agent.

University Challenge: The Sheffield Varsity

With being the main kit supplier for Sport Sheffield, we asked Maz whether we would be seeing her in their colours when the time comes to face off against the University’s city rivals, Sheffield Hallam. The fixture is eagerly anticipated by both sides and is sure to draw a huge crowd.

“Of course, I’m going to play!”. She makes no effort to hide her confidence in the Black & Gold side of the seven hills when it comes to football, “I think I’ve got to put my bets on Uni of Sheffield”. With players like Maz in the side, you would be brave to bet against them.

You can see Maz and other University of Sheffield football teams, kitted out in’s Nike range, during the Sheffield Varsity on the 25th April 2018 at Hillsborough Stadium.

Maz Pacheco 2

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