Irish football fan TV had the privilege of sitting down with Diane Caldwell, who has recently been called up to represent Ireland in the country’s first-ever Women’s World Cup. In this exclusive interview, Caldwell shared her thoughts on the significance of this achievement, her earliest World Cup memories, and the journey she has undertaken to reach this pinnacle of her career.

“To be finally going on the plane and to represent this fine country in a World Cup is just something that you dream of as a kid,” Caldwell expressed with excitement. “It’s really surreal to finally have achieved it.”

Born in 1988, Caldwell vaguely recalls watching the World Cup in the US as a child. Those early memories laid the foundation for her love of the game and her aspirations to reach the highest level. “I remember watching the TV with my family, and then there was the memorable World Cup in Japan and Saipan,” Caldwell reminisced. “I had a little watch party in my Conservatory for every game, with flags up. It was a momentous occasion for Ireland to be in that World Cup.”

As a devoted fan of both Ireland and Manchester United, Caldwell looked up to iconic figures like Roy Keane and aspired to achieve similar greatness. “Watching your heroes play, you just aspire to achieve what they achieved,” she shared. Her journey in football has been remarkable, ticking off various career goals such as playing for Manchester United and participating in major tournaments for Ireland. “Last year was a phenomenal year for me personally,” Caldwell acknowledged. “I was very lucky and grateful to have achieved those goals.”

Reflecting on the recent Scotland game, Caldwell expressed her joy at seeing former players who had played a crucial role in her development come out to support the team. “They were just really big role models for myself and other girls who had played alongside them,” she said, referring to Olivia O’Toole, Emma Byrne, and others. Their continued involvement and support showcase the strong bond within the Irish women’s football community.

When asked about the mood in the camp, Caldwell emphasized the unique camaraderie and togetherness of the Irish team. “We’ve got a really strong togetherness and unity,” she said proudly. “Everyone fights for each other, and it makes that bond stronger through the hard times and good times.”

On a personal note, Caldwell shared her recent marriage in Greece, making this World Cup journey even more unforgettable. “It’s been a summer of a lifetime for me,” she revealed. “Getting married and then coming into camp straight after, it’s been a whirlwind experience.”

As Ireland prepares for their upcoming game against France, Caldwell acknowledged the mixed emotions surrounding the tournament. However, she emphasized the need to remain focused on training hard and performing to the best of their abilities. The Irish team’s resilience and determination are qualities that will serve them well in the World Cup.

With the World Cup just around the corner, Diane Caldwell and the entire Irish squad are ready to make their mark on the global stage. As Caldwell embarks on this historic journey, the Irish football community stands united, supporting their team every step of the way.

watch in full here: