Norway international Emilie Haavi has revealed she has “no regrets” about making the move to the Boston Breakers earlier this year, but admitted that it was probably the right opportunity at the wrong time after deciding to return to Norway just seven months after making the move to the US.
The 25-year-old forward was a long time target of Breakers Head Coach Matt Beard, who had twice tried to sign her while at Liverpool, but due to a number of injuries and a struggle to settle in her new surroundings, it was mutually agreed that Haavi should be waived.
Now back at home with former club LSK Kvinner, based in Lillestrøm, Women’s Soccer Zone spoke to our former columnist about her time in the US, and how she reviewed her time stateside.
“It was obviously a hard time for me in Boston with the injuries and travelling back and forth to Norway with the national team,” she said.
“It was hard because I was injured, I missed pre-season and the opportunity to get to know the girls. The longest time I stayed was four weeks at a time, which meant I was not part of everything all the time, which was hard. With all of the injuries, I just think it was really bad timing.”
Despite the difficult stint that Haavi had in Boston, she certainly doesn’t view the whole experience as being negative.
She featured in seven games, starting five, which gave her experience of playing in a league outside of her own country for the first time in her career – something she said she would not be against in the future.
“I had a good time being there and I don’t regret it at all. I learnt a lot about myself on and off the pitch, it was a very good experience and I appreciate the opportunity they gave me.
“I’m open to getting out (to another league) again, although for now I am happy at LSK. But I am definitely not scared to try again.”
On her return to LSK, Haavi admitted that when the chance to return home was presented to her, it was “the right thing to do” after her stop start career in Boston.
Since returning, she has managed to help her side win another Norwegian league title, and help LSK overcome experienced Danish side Brondby in the Women’s Champions League.
They now face Manchester City in the last 16 of the competition, a side that reached the semi-finals last year.
The Norwegian international confessed to not knowing too much about her side’s English opponents, but was confident her team could put up a positive challenge.
“These are the most fun games and the games you want to play in. You want to play good teams, and for me the chance to play in the Champions League was one of the reasons for me coming back.
“I don’t know much about Man City, but I think we have a chance if we have a good day. If we play at our best, I think we can make some problems.”
Haavi’s return was a boost for the club in a league where many of the top players, especially for the national team, play their football outside of the Norwegian Toppserien.
With 65 Caps to her name, the former Breaker is one of the most experienced players in her team, even though she is still only 25.
She revealed that she is enjoying the responsibility that comes with that experience, with the opportunity to pass some of her knowhow on to the younger players.
“I feel like I have to be a player that takes responsibility and I like that. As one of the most experienced players in the team, I haven’t been in my best shape on the pitch, but have taken responsibility outside of it.
“I hope I can do a good job, especially helping players who haven’t played that many big games who maybe have a few more nerves. I like to be an important player on and off the field.”