Aitana Bonmati World 11

Aitana Bonmati: "We don't have the equality we deserve"

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Aitana Bonmati World 11
  • The Spanish star made her FIFA FIFPRO Women’s World 11 debut last month, after being voted into the team of the year by professional footballers from around the globe

  • The World Cup winner speaks to FIFPRO about the importance of collective action
  • "We are part of a change in this society, and I am proud to be part of this generation," says the Barcelona midfielder  

Aitana Bonmati’s impact stretches beyond the pitch. When not dictating play in a Barcelona or Spain jersey, the midfield fulcrum uses her platform to raise awareness about issues affecting women’s footballers.

One example was last month at The Best FIFA Football Awards gala, where Bonmati was voted into the 2023 FIFA FIFPRO Women's World 11 by her peers, in which the Women’s World Cup winner voiced her pride about being part of “a powerful generation of women who are changing the rules of the game and the world”.

Bonmati, 26, sat down with FIFPRO to discuss the current state of women's football around the world, how collective action can stimulate positive change and her passions beyond the pitch.

FIFPRO: Aitana, what changes are needed to boost women's football?

Aitana Bonmati: There are many things that need to be done. To say one would be to ignore many others. I wouldn't just pick one, but it's clear that we have seen many things [in 2023] that are not pleasant and it's clear that we don't have the equality we deserve. There is still a long way to go, and I hope that with our struggle we can also contribute to this improving.

The Spanish national team demonstrated in 2023 the importance of unity to achieve change…

It is much easier in the end when you unite as a group and you have clear objectives; I think it is much easier than going around the world alone. The more of us there are, the more strength we have. For me, it's not just a Spanish cause – it's a global cause. I think that's why the whole world came together. In the end, it was an event that happened with our country, but this happens in many jobs around the world. Therefore, I think that many people could relate. And I think this union is important all over the world.

Something you've talked about many times is the importance of mental health. Where does this motivation come from?

It's the basis of everything. In the end, if your head doesn't work, your feet don't work, and your life doesn't work either. I'm not just talking about football, but life in general. I think it's important to know yourself and know where you can improve. And that's what psychologists are there for. I have always spoken openly about this subject. Everyone should be able to go to a psychologist and treat it as a normal situation. It's normal that, with the society we have, we always find things we can improve.

Aitana Bonmati W11 2023 2

What are you most passionate about outside of football?

I love travelling and getting to know new cultures. I don't have much time to do that really, as the year is busy [with football]. But it's something that moves me inside and it motivates me to get to know the world and to know that in other places they live differently to how you live. That captivates me. Reading is also something that I really enjoy; you learn a lot and it's a moment to connect with yourself, which is sometimes necessary.

What is the best thing about being a professional footballer?

It is difficult to choose just one thing, but I would choose the legacy we are leaving for the next generations and for the world in general. I think we are part of a change in this society, and I am proud to be part of this generation.