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‘I came to Real Madrid to win titles’ – Spain star Athenea del Castillo aiming high with club and country

8:45 AM EST 11/28/21
ATHENEA DEL CASTILLO 28112021
The highly-rated 21-year-old forward continues to make impressive progress on domestic and international stages, with silverware in her sights

Athenea del Castillo has enjoyed a memorable 2021, with a high-profile move to Real Madrid at club level accompanied by senior international recognition with Spain.

With the 21-year-old’s stock most definitely on the rise, lofty targets are now being drawn up with club and country.

A place at the 2023 Women’s World Cup is there to be shot at, while the plan on a domestic stage is to start chasing down major silverware while fulfilling undoubted potential.

What has been said?

Ahead of a World Cup qualifying outing against Scotland on Tuesday, Athenea has told GOAL of her ambition: “Well, in the short-term, to continue having minutes and added experience here with the national team and to get to the level of winning titles at Real Madrid.

“I want to try and get a title, qualify for the quarter-finals of the Champions League, and from there aim to be as high as possible in the table in the league and trying to get into the Champions League.

“The aim is to get a trophy because I came to Real Madrid to win titles, as they are a team with a lot of ambition.”

How important is mental strength?

Athenea has come a long way in a short space of time, with a stint at Deportivo Abanca used as a stepping stone between minnows Racing Feminas and the heavyweights of Real Madrid.

A player considered by many to have the world at her feet has had to learn quickly how to narrow her focus and overcome any challenges placed in her path.

On the importance of staying strong and working with mental health professionals, Athenea has said: “It is worth a lot. I think it gives you one more advantage when there are a thousand facts in the game, while also helping on a personal level.

“I worked with a girl at Depor and now I have a boy with the national team because I think it is good for everything, for your day to day and any personal issues. If it helps a little with football as well, that is even better.

“I have not been going much. I started going in my first year at Depor because I didn't score goals.

“I didn't manage to score goals until the second round. It wasn't something that obsessed me, but I came from Racing, scoring 20 goals per season, so it was like: “What's wrong with me?"

“In the end I put myself in the hands of professionals and from then on I think it has given me an advantage and I keep working on it a lot because I think it can help me a lot both in sport and everyday life.”

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