Alexia Putellas reveals first Barcelona memories and Camp Nou dream

Alexia Putellas has spoken about her connection with Barcelona and Camp Nou
Alexia Putellas has spoken about her connection with Barcelona and Camp Nou / Quality Sport Images/GettyImages

Ballon d'Or and The Best FIFA Women's Player Alexia Putellas has revealed what Camp Nou means to her, ahead of the historic Champions League match at the stadium in March.

Putellas and her Barcelona Femení teammates normally play their home games at the 6,000-capacity Estadi Johan Cruyff, but will take on Real Madrid at the Camp Nou on 30 March for their Champions League quarter-final second leg.

The match will mark only the second time in 50 years that a women's game has been played at Camp Nou, with the other being a 5-0 win over Espanyol at the start of 2021 — though that fixture was played without fans due to pandemic restrictions.

The upcoming Champions League Clásico has already sold all available tickets, with an attendance of 85,000 expected — a figure which surpasses the average men's team gates at Camp Nou this season.

Writing for The Players' Tribune, Putellas (a Barcelona native) has revealed just what playing at the iconic stadium means to her.

She writes: "I used to think that the Camp Nou was just for men. As a kid I would go with my parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents — all on the bus with the Mollet penya [fan club].

"In those days, I wanted to sit as close as possible to the players. I was always insisting that we move a little closer, even if the view was actually worse. I just wanted to be part of the action! Back then, if you’d have told me that one day I would set foot on that grass, I’d have been like, 'Pffft no way.… Only men play here.'

"When I played there last year [against Espanyol], it was the realisation of a dream I’d had since I was six years old. When you’re actually in the dressing room, or on the centre circle — wow —  you really have to stop and take it all in for a moment. The place commands respect."

Putellas, who won the treble with Barça 2020/21, also wrote about her first memories of the club she grow up supporting — which involve taking in a Clásico from the top of a pool table.

She writes: "Since I was a little kid, the goal was to play for Barça. When I'm playing for this club, I truly feel like I am representing my family, my history, my home.

"When I was six, I remember watching the Clásico from on top of a pool table. My family are big Culers and when they couldn’t go to the stadium, they often watched in this bar — La Bolera — next to where we lived in Mollet del Vallès. It would always get packed out for big games, and my dad would pick me up and stick me on the pool table so I could see the big screen over all the adults.

"I remember being super nervous even though I barely understood what was going on. I just knew that this mattered."

Read the full article on The Players' Tribune