The United Mates Keitel and Joe are joined by Paige Almendariz, the young soccer star from northern California who’s making a name for herself in English women’s football and as an influencer on social media.
On football growing up:
Starting to get into football around age 5 and balancing it with dancing throughout her childhood. Leaving dance to her twin sister and choosing to pursue football . Being inspired by players like Steven Gerrard who Paige always looked up to as a leader on the football pitch.
On football in college:
Getting a soccer scholarship and moving to sin city . Training and playing at 100% with the UNLV Rebels. Playing in 110 degree heat in the desert. NCAA restrictions on her social life as a student athlete.
On ball juggling skills:
“Tekkers Test”: Paige tries to guess which tricks are real and which ones are fake from a bizarre sounding list of names .
Practicing her control over years and learning new tricks . Paige says that working on her juggling skills and kick ups has given her improved control on the pitch in a real game.
On her social media presence and being an influencer:
Her rise to over 70,000 followers on Instagram . Having the platform to #inspireAgeneration and use her following for good. The joys and the pressures of being an influencer and a role model.
On moving across the world to England to play professionally:
Packing up from Vegas and moving to England, the home of football . Training with the London Bees. Citing the growth of women’s football in England as her reasons for crossing the pond. Following Lucy Bronze’s game closely. Being part of the recent movement of US players to the English game like Alex Morgan, Tobin Heath and Christen Press.
+ Paige’s thoughts on the year 2020 and what’s to come in 2021.