In February, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Real Madrid player Caroline Møller Hansen alongside my partner in crime Abdullah Abdullah, who has been doing a glut of interviews with players and coaches from the women’s game on his substack Pressing Matters.
Our chat with Møller happened in two parts. While both sections were tactics-focused, the second component involved video that she reacted to and analyzed in live time.
Below are answers she gave to two of our questions. Go to my newsletter, Tactical Rant, to read the whole thing.
In a Champions League press conference, I asked [Real Madrid coach] Alberto Toril what he thought your best position was and he said that you “can play as both a striker and a winger,” but that he saw “more possibilities for you as a left winger.”
What do you think your best role is and do your views on that change when you play with the national team? For example, you played on the left vs. Italy [in the Algarve Cup], but you were a striker off the bench in the last two World Cup qualifiers against Russia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
My best position is as a left winger. I am really strong with both my left and right [feet], so it’s not a problem to cross with my left or to shoot and finish with my right. I also feel like I am strongest when I play on the wing and have a little bit more space and time to get up to speed and do 1v1’s.
I also really like playing as a [forward] as well, because one of the things I’ve been working on for the past two or three years is my back-to-goal game. I feel like I’ve shown this more on the national team. The way I play striker here [with the national team] is better than when I play with Real Madrid. [With Denmark], I like playing as a striker, but at Madrid I like playing more on the wings and doing 1v1’s.
But I would say my strongest position is definitely the left wing. I think that’s where I see my strengths — on the final line, getting the ball, and going 1v1. I also like playing the ball in small spaces with a midfielder. I like the wing — left or right, but preferably the left wing.
Obviously, with the national team, it’s a lot more direct. There’s less of that at Real Madrid. But are your preferences also influenced by the great emphasis on building into wide areas and because the wingers play very, very wide at Madrid? Is that why you prefer playing as a winger at club level, since you can simply get on the ball more as opposed to when you play as a striker?
Yeah, Alberto wants the wingers to stay high and wide, where, with the national team, he [coach Lars Søndergaard] wants the wing-backs to be on the last line, which makes the wingers play like an inner midfielder.