FIFA Women's World Cup 2023: A Round Of 16 Food Tour
Image Credit: Facebook/@fifawomensworldcup

AS the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 blazes into the all-important Round Of 16, interest in the teams and the star players has never been higher. At Slurrp, we’re indulging in a fun food detour before the knockout matches — that will determine the eight quarter-finalists in this tournament — kick off, tracing the favourite meals of all 16 team captains. Let’s dig in!


Switzerland — Lia Wälti 

The Arsenal midfielder and Swiss captain has a set of favourite drinks that are based on the season: in the winter, she prefers to have cinnamon tea and chai latte; in the summers, she guzzles a goodish amount of coconut water. When living with her ex-partner (and Arsenal teammate) Caitlin Foord, Wälti’s meals typically encompassed fish and vegetables, especially sweet potatoes.


Spain — Ivana Andrés

The Real Madrid centre-back is vocal about her intense focus on nutrition and healthy eating, seeing it as a vital part of taking care of herself. “We are footballers 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. I always have a diet,” she has previously said, of her eating habits. Andrés ensures she has a balanced intake of carbohydrates, proteins, vegetables — and doesn’t deviate even on festive occasions like Christmas. Pastries, highly refined foods and sugar are on her no-go list. What might be the food that the disciplined sports star does indulge in? Her 2022 wedding to Ana Moreno featured Iberian ham and cheese, so it’s safe to assume she enjoys those.


Japan — Saki Kumagai

Whether she’s playing for Bayern Munich, her new club AS Roma, or captaining her national team, Kumagai is a straight shooter. She’s as forthright about her favourite food: Yakiniku (Korean barbecue) and sushi, any day of the week.


Norway — Maren Mjelde 

The Chelsea defender/midfielder’s food preferences aren’t known. 


The Netherlands — Sherida Spitse 

Spitse, a midfielder for Ajax, endorses NOCCO, a “functional and sugar-free drink” that’s apparently a favourite of Dutch athletes.


South Africa — Refiloe Jane

Before any match, be it for her club US Sassuolo or for the national team — Jane gets in a substantial meal of pasta. She says it’s not a superstition but definitely qualifies as an unshakeable pre-game ritual. Other than that, she likes to keep it simple, having quipped that the one thing she needs to have in her refrigerator at all times is water.


Sweden — Caroline Seger

Seger’s hometown, Helsingborg, is famous for its tomato pie, but the FC Rosengård and Swedish captain hasn’t spoken about whether or not she is a fan of the dish.


US — Lindsey Horan

When not travelling for matches, the Lyon midfielder begins her mornings at 7 am, walking her dog Ferguson to one of her favourite coffee shops in Denver or Portland, where she grabs breakfast. Horan needs to time it such that it’s at least an hour and a half before she heads for training. Her go-to brekkie comprises cereal, yoghurt and fruit. During the day, she sips on plenty of Cheribundi Original Tart Cherry Superfruit Juice to hydrate and replenish herself.


England — Leah Williamson

The captain of the Lionesses and Arsenal star loves coming home to a meal of teriyaki chicken stir fry with noodles, peppers, courgettes and onions. “Nice and simple, but you can't beat it,” she says.


Nigeria — Onome Ebi

The Abia Angels centreback is often asked about her diet and fitness regime, and avers that balance is key. She’s been known to talk about her “special relationship with food” and is frank about not depriving herself of anything, while also not overdoing any indulgences. Captaining the Super Falcons in this year’s World Cup, Ebi says she has a standard favourite meal: spaghetti, because it makes her feel lighter.


Australia — Sam Kerr

The captain of the Matildas is arguably one of the most-watched players in women’s football today. And she scores very high on the foodie quotient too. Going out for dinner, trying out new places to eat, searching for good coffee (she prefers lattes) — these are a few of Kerr’s favourite things. While her breakfast tends to be almost stereotypically Aussie — eggs on toast with avocado and Vegemite — she likes to indulge in Japanese fusion cuisine for her other meals, and sushi. When she’s in the UK — Kerr is a forward with Chelsea — she’ll have a cottage pie or roast dinner. And dinner on the eve of a match is always pasta.


Denmark — Pernille Harder 

A midfielder/forward for Bayern Munich when she isn’t captaining the Danish side, Harder enjoys a good homemade poke bowl. If she’s eating out though, Asian cuisine is her unquestioned choice.


Colombia — Daniela Montoya

Montoya, a midfielder for Junior de Barranquilla, keeps it simple when it comes to food: she adores her mom’s cooking, and for a sweeter treat, nothing beats strawberries.


Jamaica — Khadija Shaw (forward, Manchester City)

Because Shaw spends a lot of time in the UK (she’s a forward for Manchester City), she misses Jamaican food, particularly jerk chicken. Of course, she can get it in England as well, but Shaw says it’s simply not the same as the one from home. Which is why, she usually counts on her family bringing her some of the real deal when they visit her. Jerk chicken’s been Shaw’s favourite ever since she was little, and “it’s always been something I really get excited about when I’m having it!” she says.


France — Wendie Renard

Renard makes no bones about how proud she is of her Martinique roots, and one of the Lyon centre-back’s favourite memories growing up in the village of Le Prêcheur was the Sunday dinners she had, seated next to her dad at the table. Sadly, Renard’s father passed away of cancer when she was around eight. In more recent years, the French captain’s favourite recipe is said to be king prawns with cream.


Morocco — Ghizlane Chebbak

The ASFAR forward, whose father is Moroccan sporting hero Larbi Chebbak, isn’t known to have spoken about her favourite dishes or the diet she follows.