She was one of the greatest talents of Norwegian football. If there’s one thing Jenny Norem, 24, wishes you knew, it’s why his cruciate ligament has been torn three times.
– It is difficult to accept the fact that it is a reality. It’s out of my control, Norm says, devastated at his mother’s house in Torchov.
The wonderful contrast of the club in Kolbotn and the everyday life you live now.
There is a void around it. Nobody is home, just Norem and her crutches.
This is the first time she doesn’t cry when she opens up about what happened and the choices that unexpected events brought with her.
– I feel rootless. Football was my number one priority, and it’s completely unrealistic that I could suddenly find something new that would give me the same joy, as you say.
Giving up wasn’t an option she wanted to make.
– I tried
In soccer, there is no refusal to start in the same way as in cross-country skiing, but if there is a refusal, Norem will revoke his health certificate.
The doctors were clear in their advice to the footballer, who played all his professional years at Kolbotn.
– If it were up to me, I would have tried. But I tried six times. Norem says it’s about what’s reasonable and what’s just plain stupid.
It’s hard to absorb. At just 15 years old, the girl from Drøbak made her debut with Kolbotn in Toppserien.
The following year she was a regular in the starting line-up, playing alongside Solveig Gulbrandsen, Karina Sævik and others.
Debuting in the age-restricted national team, she was predicted to have a bright future as a soccer player.
16-year-old Norem said this after many people noticed her good performance:
“The long-term dream is, of course, the national team, and maybe abroad as well in the end. After all, Germany and France are big countries, and I would never have thought of trying my hand there.
Teammates Sævik and Synne Sofie Kinden Jensen got to experience it. Sovik to PSG and Jensen to Wolfsburg.
What happened to Norem after the two seasons?
No response to this day.
What you do know is that she tore her cruciate ligament three times, and the first two times were kind of special.
Soccer shoe repair
She was nineteen when she smoked for the first time. Her football boot got stuck in the artificial turf inside Valhall, and her knee got a turn.
The football player quickly understood what had happened. So did her teammates. This is the case with cruciate ligament injuries, you can easily see when they happen.
She herself was light-hearted during the training period, she was still young and knew she would come back.
But then there is something called that it is done quickly to tear the cruciate ligament again, if you have already taken it.
– i don’t know why. There was nothing in my knee that said it would happen again, Norem says.
Five days after she was allowed to play, it happened again.
This time it was the cruciate ligament in the opposite knee that did not want to play.
Later, she was informed that she had an unusually porous meniscus, which could be the reason why her knees weren’t as firm as they should be.
But it just might.
– I don’t have a good answer. It makes me really sad, bitter and empty. What can you say? She says it’s absolutely crazy that it turned out like this here.
In May, she tore her cruciate ligament for the third time, and in the same way. I tore my ACL all three times, and it happened all the time in small court games.
In addition, Norem had to go under the knife on three other occasions to repair his meniscus.
Now the soccer player wants to get an answer as to why her body can’t handle the game of soccer.
Many top players are affected
Norem isn’t the only one seeking answers. In the past two years, something has happened between female soccer players.
More than 50 professional soccer players in the world’s six major leagues have ruptured their cruciate ligaments. In 2022, five of them were on the Ballon d’Or list of the 20 best players in the world.
It also means that many of the great players who made their mark at this year’s World Cup will have to continue from home.
Among them are the Dutchman Vivian Miedema and the Englishman Beth Meade, both of whom are teammates of the Norwegian team Frida Mannum at Arsenal.
– You’re missing some really good players. When you travel to the WC, you want to see the best players on each team. Shame on those watching, too, Mead tells VG.
Cruciate ligament injuries have particularly shaken the Premier League, and the England national football team has taken measures. More research is on the way.
“I wish I could connect my body to a machine that could tell me what it is,” says Mead, the lead character in a documentary that will try to find answers to why women suffer two to eight times more cruciate ligament tears than men.
Cruciate ligament injuries are the biggest problem facing women’s football today, due to the long training period and the potential long-term impact it has on a player’s career, says Dr. Kathryn Ockholm Krieger. BBC.
She’s a professor of sports medicine at St Mary’s University of London and is very cautious about pinpointing the cause of the dramatic increase in cruciate ligament injuries.
However, they highlight four points Can has an effect:
– I think the explosion is coming
Back at the apartment in Torchov, Norem adjusted his sitting position and extended his arm slightly.
She has the word “designer” tattooed on her inner arm. She has always been goal oriented when it comes to soccer.
Now she must chart a new course after several dark years put an end to her biggest dream.
First stop at the psychiatrist.
One of the hardest things about this is that you have potential. I foresaw a future and had big dreams. I don’t know where that will take me, but I haven’t been able to make my choices along the way and see what that entails, she says.
She is afraid of autumn.
– I think the bang will come when I’m about to start my new life, and I step back and think “now what”.
The girl with big dreams, who feels herself to have achieved nothing but “come back”, hopes the problem will be taken seriously.
So that other young girls don’t have to ruin their future for lack of knowledge.
At least when you don’t have an answer. You have to get used to it. Your knees couldn’t take it, with no conclusion as to why or if there was anything I could do, she says.
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