2022 could have hardly been a more successful year for Danish youngster Sofie Bredgaard. The 20-years-old enjoyed a break-through season in the Swedish Damallsvenskan. Also, she debuted for Denmark and received a nomination for the prestigious Golden Girl award. All of this happened just in a little while.
On top of that, she signed for FC Rosengård. The side celebrated the Swedish championship title at the end of October. With the World Cup and exciting games in the Champions League ahead, there is more to come for Sofie Bredgaard. Her Football Hub conducted an exclusive interview with the Dane. She reflected on her achievements this year, her style of play, and more.Embed from Getty Images
Eventful year on the pitch
“The personal highlights of this season for me were the two titles won”, said the midfielder. “But maybe also being able to represent Denmark at the EUROs. It meant a lot for me, even though we as a team did not have the best tournament.” Apart from securing a record-breaking 13th league title, FC Rosengård also won the Swedish Cup in May.
Only one month earlier, Sofie Bredgaard gave her debut for the Danish Women’s National team in their 2-0 over Azerbaijan. The game saw them secure qualification for the 2023 World Cup.
If selected to play in Australia and New Zealand next year, the Dane will bring vital tournament experience with her. She featured in Denmark’s squad for the 2021 Euros in England. However, the team got eliminated in the group stage. Nevertheless, the experience was a big one for Sofie Bredgaard. “It means so much for me to be able to play for Denmark”, she told us. “Especially with everything that has happened to my family the last year.”
“It made me extra proud. And I was really proud that I could play for Denmark at the EUROs and have my family in the stands. The timing could not be better.” Earlier this year, her father was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer.
Finding her feet in football
Sofie Bredgaard was born and raised in the Danish town Frederiksværk. There, she started playing football at the early age of four at a local boy’s team. “Things started to get serious when I was around 12 years old and realized I was pretty good at this”, she told us. In 2017, the Dane enjoyed a short training spell at Manchester City. However, she decided to return to Denmark, instead of staying in England.
Back home, Sofie Bredgaard joined Copenhagen side Boldklubben af 1893, where she played until 2020.
“Being at trials are of course very cool, but maybe not so important”, the Dane reflected. “The most important step for me was probably the move to Sweden and Linköping when I was 18. I think I personally really benefitted from leaving Denmark pretty early and play in Damallsvenskan.” In 32 games for Linköping, she scored two goals. However, she caught attention with her explosive movement on, as well as off the ball and her passing.Embed from Getty Images
Despite her promising performances at Linköping, she left the club and signed for FC Rosengård. So far, she has scored six goals in 23 games for the Malmö team. Additionally, she has three assists to her name.
But how has the youngster developed since the highly anticipated transfer? “I think I have developed in all aspects”, she replied. “I learn a lot from playing with such good and experienced players. I’ve become more mature in my style of play. I’ve also learned a lot about being a professional and what it takes both on and off the pitch. The Champions League aspect was one of many things we discussed selecting club. But the main thing about coming to FCR was to play and train in an environment as good as possible.”
At FC Rosengård, the 20-years old has become a key player, as well as a regular starter in just a short time frame. She mostly plays on the right wing. Also, the Dane covers a lot of ground in the final third, where she poses a constant threat in offense.
“I’m a very technical offensive midfielder who likes to come into the pitch and use my left foot”, Sofie Bredgaard described. “I’m pretty technical and have a good left foot which I can use from long-distance. I like to make final passes and set up my teammates in the final third.”
The goals she scored recently not only stunned the spectators at the games but also fans on social media. The Dane is unpredictable when going forward. In addition, she has an eye for finding the top-left corner with her shots from outside the box. Even some of her teammates couldn’t stop praising the Dane’s efforts in offense.
When asked about the stunning strikes, Sofie Bredgaard replied with a laugh: “I have practised it a lot. And I am very comfortable in hitting that top left corner. I have just been given the time and spaces in a few consecutive games. So, it’s just very fun I have been able to pull it off.”
Now, she and her teammates at FC Rosengård are fully focused on their Champions League campaign. They booked their spot in the group stage of the European competition in a two-legged qualifier against SK Brann. It was none other than Sofie Bredgaard, whose left-footed shot hit the back of the net (top-left corner, of course) and gave her side the advantage in the decisive game.
However, the Malmö side were drawn into a difficult group. It sees them play against FC Barcelona, FC Bayern München, and Benfica Lisbon.
First Champions League experience
Many view FC Rosengård as the underdogs in these fixtures. Does this take off the pressure of the team and allows them to play more freely? “Both yes and no, we have a winning culture in the club which is always there”, said Sofie Bredgaard.
“But playing the best teams in Europe of course makes the pressure a little bit less. But we want to get the most out of it. It also means we have to be stricter in our performances in order to put ourselves in a position to get points. We just take one game at a time. And try to get as much out as possible in every game we play.”
So far, Rosengård has played FC Bayern München away (1-2) and FC Barcelona in front of a sold-out crowd at home (1-4). Despite the defeats, the team managed to score against both favoured opponents. In addition, they offered resistance against their high pressure over long periods of the games.
“I think we performed OK in both games”, Sofie Bredgaard reflected on her team’s Champions League campaign so far. “It is very good to experience such games at a higher tempo. We get the opportunity to try another approach to games. In Sweden, we usually control the ball and the tempo. But in these games, we need to work more in defense and off the ball. I think it helps us develop even more.”
FC Rosengård are one of the most successful clubs and biggest names in Swedish football. However, they might not be used to the big exposure they get to experience in the Champions League. In late December, the team will travel to Barcelona to take on the Spanish side at the famous Camp Nou.
Previously, there had been record-breaking attendances of over 90.000 fans happening. Sofie Bredgaard might get to experience this as well. “I really look forward to it – it will be crazy!”, she said when thinking of the upcoming fixture.
“It’s hard to find a game bigger than that. I have never played in front of so many people live and I just can’t wait. It’s also the last game of the year so a good way to end a good 2022!”
As she looks back on a successful season, the question of what’s next for her arises. However, the Dane insists on taking one step at a time. Nevertheless, she pursues ambitious aims: “I want to play for the best teams and win the biggest titles.”
Her promising performances during the year have proven, that Sofie Bredgaard has all that it takes to go far and make herself a name in professional football.