Julkaisemme tällä palstalle pelaajien kolumneja heidän arjestaan liigajalkapalloilijoina. Ashley Riefnerin ja Katarina Naumasen aloittamaa kolumnisarjaa jatkaa Kuopion Palloseuran hyökkääjä Gentjana Rochi. Pohjois-makedonialaishyökkääjä saapui Suomeen kaudelle 2017 ja on voittanut maalipörssin jo kertaalleen, kaudella 2018. Kaksi kierrosta ennen kauden loppua hän on jälleen vahvasti kiinni Subway Kansallisen Liigan maalikuningattaruudessa. Mikä ajaa kentällä tulisieluisena tunnettua Rochia huippuotteisiin ottelusta toiseen?
I came to Finland four years ago from Germany, where I played for a team called Cloppenburg that played in the 2nd Bundesliga. My last year in Germany was hard for me because I was overcoming an injury. So, it was the perfect time for me to move and try something different. I had a lot of good conversations with my agent and when the opportunity came to play in Finland, I wanted to take that chance. I believed that I could make an impact here, showcase my skill set and continue to help grow the game. Football in Finland was on the rise and I wanted to be a part of its growth and success.
When I first got to Finland I played for JyPK. The game was more physical then and teams played more direct. Nowadays football in the league is more technical. We rely more on our skills and combination play to disrupt the opposition. At KuPS, we have mastered the quick transition and defensive press, where we see a lot of our success.
After playing in Finland for 4 years, I’ve myself became a better soccer player. I have gained more confidence, developed my skills, learned resiliency and deepened my love of the game. Still, it is never easy to be a top-footballer. It takes a lot of hard work and commitment to maintain the same level all the time. People – especially my coaches and teammates – rely on me to be consistent and play at my highest level every single day. In addition to that, I also expect a lot from myself and hold myself to high standards. No one is harder on me than I am on myself.
There’s a lot more investment in women’s football now in Finland which is exciting and motivates me to leave a lasting legacy. My goal is to help KuPS win the Kansallinen league, play in the Champions League and win that too. Personally, what drives me is to be the best. The level of play here continues to rise and with everyone around me getting better, it drives me to be better too. So what inspires me to play here is the commitment to grow and help my team be successful. I want to win the league with my KuPS team and play in the Champions League.