Glódís Viggósdóttir: There’s no limit for us
Glódís Perla Viggósdóttir is the glue in the FC Bayern Women’s defence. In an interview with club members‘ magazine 51, Iceland’s Female Footballer of the Year talks about how relaxed things are in her homeland and how to keep cool when things get heated on the pitch.
Interview with Glódís Perla Viggósdóttir
Glódís, there are around 370,000 people in Iceland, but the country still boasts good football and handball teams. How do you do that?
“I think it has to do with the fact that we Icelanders have a special mentality. We don't feel like a small country, we believe that there’s no limit for us. Why shouldn't we beat countries like Germany or France in football? On top of that, we have very good sports facilities and very good coaches in Iceland.”
Icelanders are considered very relaxed. How does that fit in with the mentality of a competitive athlete?
“In Iceland we don't stress so much about every little thing. We say: 'Þetta reddast'. That means it will work out somehow. Maybe that's also because of the weather, which is crazy in Iceland. Rain, snow, storms, a volcanic eruption... We know that everything can change all the time and we can deal with that. In sport, too, we think to ourselves: what can happen? And if we make a mistake, we say, it happens, let's move on.”
Is that what you thought when you came to FC Bayern in 2021: It'll work out somehow?
“I came here because I want to win titles and because I felt I could develop as a player here. Bayern was the next step for me. But of course you can also say, what can happen to me? Worst case scenario, at least I'll get to know a lot of new things.”
You have already won titles in Iceland and Sweden. Are you thinking one step further in Munich, i.e. the Champions League?
“Winning the Champions League is one of my biggest dreams. I think that's the ultimate goal for each of us here. And we’re at a club that’s also striving for that. Only two Icelanders - Sara Björk Gunnarsdóttir in the women's and Eidur Gudjohnsen in the men's - have achieved that so far.”
You are currently one of three Icelanders at FC Bayern. Is Icelandic now the second official language in the dressing room?
“I enjoy finally being able to speak Icelandic again. I was recently in Sweden for six years and never had anyone from Iceland in my team. My Icelandic deteriorated during that time, I only spoke Swedish. Whenever I was at home, my grandparents would correct me because I used a slangy expression or my grammar was wrong. I even used words that didn't exist. It's good that I speak Icelandic every day again now.”
Do you know which footballer from Iceland has had the most headlines in Germany in recent years?
Exactly. Rúrik Gíslason. He won the TV show ‘Let's dance’ in 2021.
“You want to hear something funny? His mother was my teacher at school (laughs).”
No?! So it's true that everyone kind of knows everyone in Iceland?
“Yes, especially in football, it's a small world in Iceland. Rúrik played at the same club as me. I saw him every now and then, but we never spoke.”
Did you have a role model as a child?
“Yes, Katrín Jónsdóttir. She was captain of the Iceland national team and sometimes came to our games. I always wanted to be like her. I didn't know any other female or male footballers because there was no football on TV at home. Later, when I became a national team player, Katrín Jónsdóttir was also there and I stood on the pitch with her. That was a great moment for me.”
You have now played more than 100 international matches and have become a role model for young players. Is there anything you would like to pass on to them?
“It’s important for me to convey to the girls that they can do anything they want. Footballer, doctor, astronaut - everything is possible. They should dream big and determine their own path. The world is open to them today."
The extended interview is available to read in the latest edition of members’ magazine ‘51’