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Published 30 May 2024 4 min read
England Women's Senior Team

20 Questions with Alessia Russo

Written by:

Adam Drury

The England and Arsenal striker reveals her best achievements, favourite places and more

Read Hannah Hampton's 20 questions

What is your earliest memory?

My dad's side of the family is from Italy and I remember going to the beach every summer for school holidays. We'd play football on the beach every day and kind of learnt Italian.

If you could go back in time, would you? And where would you go?

I'd love to go back in time. I love old-school RnB music and disco music – and my mum and dad are big on music as well – so I'd go back to the 1970s and 1980s and live in that era. I love history as well so I'd love to go back and explore what the world used to be like.

What do you like most about yourself?

I think I'm quite a caring person. I like to look out for people and make sure everyone's OK.

What is your biggest achievement?

It's got to be winning the EUROs. The World Cup was incredible too but winning that trophy at Wembley is number one.

What makes you angry?

Not a lot, people always say they never see me angry. Losing makes me angry. And traffic lights!

Alessia Russo celebrates winning EURO 2022 at Wembley
Alessia Russo celebrates winning EURO 2022 at Wembley

Who is your biggest influence?

My family. My mum and dad and brothers.

How do you react under pressure?

We're often put in high pressure situations as athletes and in the sport we play. So you have to be ready to react and perform under pressure. Most games have something riding on it.

When do you feel most at ease?

In the sun chilling with my family. Any time spent with friends and family really.

What do you dream about when you sleep?

Some crazy stuff. I've had dreams about my teeth falling out, dreams where I'm falling off something and then twitched and woken myself up.

Do you have a favourite phrase or word?

Before every game my dad always says to me, 'Be the best you can be'. So that's something that's stuck between us.

08 May 2024 6:52

Russo and Mead become detectives

Alessia Russo and Beth Mead solve clues to uncover a mystery Lioness

What reminds you of home?

My mum's a really good cook so I'd say nice home-cooked food. And a cup of tea.

Are you superstitious about anything?

I jump seven times before the whistle blows at the start of a game. I don't know where it came from but it stuck and now I do it every game.

What makes you cry?

Sad films and sad songs. I would say I'm an emotional person and when I get too stressed out I get upset as well.

Which song makes you feel good?

Good question. I love my music. I love Sunday Morning by Maroon 5. That's one of my favourite songs.

What is your biggest obstacle?

I've had a few injuries during my career, which have been tough. I think for me it's a mental thing, being confident and trusting yourself.

Alessia Russo celebrates scoring against Sweden in April 2024
Alessia Russo celebrates scoring against Sweden in April 2024

How do you deal with expectation?

As you get older there's a lot of pressure and expectation, so it's about making sure you manage that and look after yourself.

What would you say is your favourite place in the world?

Italy. Just being on the beach.

What's your most valuable possession?

I would say my nomination bracelet. All of my family have one and you can get these little charms on it, which my mum and dad always buy for my birthdays. It's a sentimental thing and it's nice that all my family have one.

What's your worst fear?

I have a few. I don't like snakes. I don't like spiders. I don't like sharks, lots of animals really. I'd say deep water out in the sea as well.

How would you like to be remembered?

First and foremost, as a good person and teammate. Someone that has every other person's back. In terms of football, as a goalscorer. Someone that likes to be involved and tries to make something happen.