Wednesday, September 6, 2023

I struggled at Man City but ex-Manchester United player Luke Chadwick mentored me through difficulties

Georgia Stanway heads into Wednesday’s Women’s World Cup semi-final with the chance to make history with the Lionesses.

England face Australia in Sydney for a place in Sunday’s final, live on talkSPORT 2, where Spain awaits the winners.

Stanway is aiming to steer England to a second successive tournament final

Sarina Weigman’s side have momentum on their side following last summer’s Euro 2022 success and whilst the Lionesses are at the height of popularity, Stanway is keeping her feet firmly on the ground.

The attacking midfielder is quick to recall when times were not so straightforward for her, namely during her time at Manchester City.

And on the eve of the semi-final, Stanway feels now is the time to open up on past struggles and her method of remaining calm.

“Once or twice a week, I speak with a mentor and that’s something that I’ve done for a few years now,” Stanway told The Guardian.

“I’m not afraid to say it, I went through a time at [Manchester] City where it was a little bit up and down in terms of my mentality, my position.

“Everything was changing, and that person was my go-to in terms of getting clarity on my position [and] what I wanted to achieve in that season.

The person in question: former Manchester United star Luke Chadwick, who struggled with his mental health in his late teens over public criticism of his appearance.

“He’s an ex-player at United and he went through his battles as a player and I was facing, not similar battles, but I was facing my individual battles at Manchester City,” said Stanway.

Chadwick was bullied for his appearance on TV programme They Think It’s All OverGetty – Contributor

“He was somebody who had recently joined my agency and hoped to help mentor players and hopefully put people on the right path, making sure that they don’t experience what he did, or if they do experience it, that he can say: ‘This is what helped me’.”

“He’s honestly the best guy and he cares for absolutely everybody,” the Bayern Munich star explained.

“The most important thing is that he removes himself from any equation, and he’s just so focused on making sure that he improves the individual and wants them to be the utmost successful individual as a player and as a person.”

Having Chadwick close by as external support has been hugely beneficial for Stanway, who has now found the formula to best prepare her for matches.

“It’s just little things,” she said. “You rely on the good luck message before the game, and he never fails. Always after a game, he’s the first one to say something positive and then: ‘let me know when you want to talk’. It’s always on my terms, which is so understanding as well.”

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