Dieke: Trying to inspire others makes me personally smile

Ifeoma Dieke, Scotland Women’s very first black captain, says she expectations her achievements will inspire other people to follow in her footsteps.

The American-born defender, who had been brought up in Lanarkshire, was permitted play for Scotland, the United States or even, through her parents, Nigeria, yet went onto make 123 looks for Scotland.

On the way, she played for Great Britain on the 2012 London Olympics as well as understanding her dream of captaining her nation.

Speaking on The Women’s Football Display , Dieke said she got encountered many obstacles along the way yet that resilience had ultimately paid back.

“Knowing that down the road there could be a future female black chief, and knowing that if I go down within the books as the first one after that will inspire someone else to be with this problem, ” she said.

“No matter what, no matter your sex or your colour, if you place your mind to something and you just knuckle down, then good things happen without a person even seeking it.

“So knowing that there is someone who has long gone before them, that is what makes me personally prouder, knowing that if I can encourage someone to be actually like I wish to be a captain, being black plus female. That’s what makes me grin, it’s about knowing someone really wants to follow in my footsteps.

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“As a youngster, I was actually shy so it was hard to just go into a situation where I actually don’t know anybody – if you browse around, there is nobody like me, I may feel represented, so I think it comes with an element of fear in that way [for under-represented communities in football].

“Just thinking, you understand, you’re not going to be accepted due to the fact all some people see is the color of your skin and then they make the judgement about you off of that will. So then it’s a case if you show up, are you going to get a fair break of the whip?

“There are also all the elements that everybody differs. I’ve gone through it myself and am had that resilience that no matter exactly what barrier what object was tossed my way [I’ve found a way to come through it].

“If an environment is inviting, then it is easier for everybody to really feel included and to just go out there and do it. ”

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