Interview | 'I've always been one of the guys'

Interview | 'I've always been one of the guys'
7 min

Anyone who knows the 20-year-old Fleur Stoit a little can't be surprised that she plays in the point of attack. After all, the Leerdam native loves action. Even so much that she may want to become a police officer after her football career. Before that happens, she is focusing on her career at PSV, where her biggest rival is also one of her best friends.

Your mother didn't initially want you to go to football, right?
"In fact, she always joked that she didn't want a boy so she wouldn't have to watch a football game every weekend. Then she got me haha! I still went horseback riding for a while, but I've always been one of the guys. After my first football practice, there was no stopping me. From then on, Mom was okay with it too and even quite liked it."

So does she come to watch regularly?
"She has only not been there once. You see, that match fell in her vacation and then she asked a thousand times if I didn't mind. Secretly I did, but of course I didn't say so. It's very important to me that my parents come to watch."

Did you always know there were opportunities as a professional football star?
"Not at all. That only started to dawn on me after my first international. I was impressed by the number of spectators and I also scored the winning goal. From that moment I knew: this is what I want."

"Once I feel comfortable in a group I loosen up.

So at fifteen, your life became entirely devoted to football. Did you still have side jobs then?
"Definitely, and I still have. On weekends I sometimes work as a babysitter and sometimes I help out at the Academy as a trainer at the Football School. I enjoy dealing with kids and teaching them something."

It will hopefully be another 15 years or so, but do you want to continue full-time as a trainer after your football career?
"Please no, haha! I see daily what the many trainers at the PSV Academy have to do. That training wouldn't suit me so much. If I stay active in the sports world, then as a physiotherapist or sports psychologist, but secretly a police officer seems like a lot of fun. No office job for me where I have to stare at a computer all day. That would drive me crazy."

Police officer in Eindhoven or in Leerdam?
"Eindhoven! I like a bit of action and Eindhoven has suited me very well the past four years. So I don't necessarily have to leave. In Leerdam, at most you'll be chasing some guys on a souped-up scooter. It has to be a bit exciting."

Did you want to become a police officer as a child?
"No, I wanted to be a psychologist for a very long time and after high school I also started a college course in applied psychology. There I quickly found out that it was just a little too floaty for me, so I've since quit. Currently I am busy with a Spanish course, while I continue to orient myself for a new study."

'Of course I would prefer to play everything, but patience is a virtue.'

By now you have been playing at PSV for four years, can I say that you like it here?
"Certainly, I am completely in my place. I have already experienced wonderful moments here, such as the championship with Young PSV, the transfer to the A-selection, my first professional contract and a cup final. In addition, every day I get the space to develop in a beautiful environment with great facilities. I am completely in my place here for the time being."

What type of football star are you?
"I'm a bit in between the type of striker who creates her own chances and the traditional finisher. I always look for the combination and with my passing skills I can also launch fellow players. My speed and shot are my biggest weapons."

This season you have to beat Joëlle Smits.
How do you find that situation?
"Look, of course I would prefer to play everything, but patience is a virtue. At this stage of my career, I consider this a healthy situation. Joelle is a very good player, so I also really like the fact that I can learn from her in the lee. I also get along very well with her. If I'm disappointed that I didn't play a game, she feels this well and supports me."

Do you have any other buddies within the group?
"I get along well with everyone, but Zera and I have a special bond. We've been playing together for years and made the same moves at the same time."

What traits do you bring to the group?
"I'm really an assertive Dutchman, though. I say what I think pretty quickly, sometimes even a little too quickly, but never at the expense of another person. I always want everyone to feel good. In addition, I am quite exuberant, so I don't shut up easily. I think I do have a positive impact on the atmosphere."

Are you always busy in social situations?

"No, I think of myself as half introvert and half extrovert. I'm pretty quiet at first and actually don't like group assignments either, they drive me crazy - except on the football field. As soon as I feel comfortable I loosen up. We have a very cozy team, so that invites me to be a bit busier."

Do you also sometimes do things with teammates off the field?
"Definitely, from PSV we even live together with thirteen players. I like to go out with friends and family. And when I'm really alone I like to read a book or watch a movie. We happen to have quite a few bookworms on our team."

So what kind of books and movies do you like?
"I mostly read sweet novels. Now I read a lot of Colleen Hoover, for example, and as a kid I read mostly Geronimo Stilton books. As for movies, I like a little more action; a war movie or science fiction, for example, but Creed and The Maze Runner are my favorite movies. I've seen those maybe eighty times."

There's quite a difference between your book and movie tastes.
"Yes, haha! That's because when I read a book I really want to unwind. History used to be my favorite subject in high school, so hence the war movies."

You just mentioned that you are learning Spanish, would you like to play in the Spanish league eventually?

"Well that seems like fun, but the English league attracts me just a little bit more. But for now I am fully focused on PSV, where I first want to become a base player, score a lot of goals and win prizes."

Fleur, we've got your back. This column is made possible in part by OTTO Work Force. Our back sponsor supports everyone with the ambition to reach their personal peak.