«oct 2018»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930311234
567891011
«nov 2018»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
2930311234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293012
3456789
«dec 2018»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
262728293012
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31123456
«jan 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
31123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28293031123
45678910
«feb 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
28293031123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728123
45678910
«mar 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
25262728123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031
1234567
«apr 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293012345
6789101112
«may 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
293012345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
272829303112
3456789
«jun 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
272829303112
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
1234567
«jul 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930311234
567891011
«aug 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
2930311234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930311
2345678
«sep 2019»
MOTUWETHFRSASU
2627282930311
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
30123456
AlbaniaAndorraArmeniaAustriaAzerbaijanBelgiumBosnia HerzegovinaBelarusBulgariaCroatiaCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkSpainEstoniaFaroe IslandsFinlandFranceGreat BritainGeorgiaGermanyGreeceHungaryIrelandIcelandIsraelItalyKosovoLatviaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMoldovaFYR MacedoniaMaltaMontenegroMonacoNetherlandsNorwayPolandPortugalRomaniaRussiaSloveniaSerbiaSwitzerlandSlovakiaSwedenTurkeyUkraine
 
EnglandScotland
Other EHF Sites 

22.11.2018, 12:21
At 31, Amandine Leynaud is still “living the dream”
«Go back »Print Version


FEATURE: After many years at the top, it is still hard to find a player more passionate about her sport than French goalkeeper Amandine Leynaud, a true ambassador of the EHF ‘Handball Inspires Generations’ campaign
 

At 31, Amandine Leynaud is still “living the dream”

For someone who has been at the Women’s EHF FINAL4 four times, played the Olympics final in Rio, and won gold at the World Championship 2017 in Germany, one might not expect Amandine Leynaud to be still saying that she is “living the dream.”

But she does.

“I still feel very lucky to be able to make a living thanks to my passion,” she says. “Handball remains a passion for me. I do what I like, every day. Life could be worse.”

Addicted, and never stopped playing

Like many others, the French goalkeeper was introduced to handball in primary school. She tried her luck at the local club, got addicted and never stopped playing.

Back then, she never thought about having a professional career in handball.

“I think I didn’t think about it as a job until I was 17 or 18,” Leynaud says. “15 years ago, being a female professional player was still something very rare. But I knew it was really something I wanted.”

Her first role models were no local handball players; Leynaud aimed high right from the start.

“The first time I watched a handball game on TV was the World Championship Final 1999 between Norway and France,” she says. “Cecilie Leganger and Valerie Nicolas were between the posts, two of the best goalkeepers at that time. And they kind of inspired me along the years.”

Meanwhile, Leynaud has become a source of inspiration for younger generations. And even though she doesn’t always feel comfortable about it, she embraces being a role model.

“I find it kind of flattering when parents come to you and say that their little girl started handball because of you,” she says. “I think that I, along with the whole France team, try to convey values through our actions and our attitude.”

"You don't want to disappoint your fans"

It has been 11 years since Leynaud played her first major tournament, the World Championship 2007, which, just like the upcoming EHF EURO 2018, took place in France.

“I have a lot of good memories, especially how we connected with our fans. In the arenas, 80% of the people were supporting us and you don’t want to disappoint them when you enter the court,” she says.

While Leynaud, just 20 at that time, was one of the youngest members of the French squad in 2007, she is one of the leading players taking of the newcomers.

“I am now in the position that Isabelle Wendling or Véronique Pecqueux-Rolland had when I arrived. We have to help the young girls not only to find their place in the team, but also to teach them how to handle this home competition,” she says.

“It’s very easy to get lost in such a competition. Media, fans, family, everyone wants a piece of you. But you have to stick to the competition, you have games to play and medals to win.”

Handball will be on everybody's mind

Handball will be on everyone’s mind in France from 29 November to 16 December. But with opponents like Russia, Montenegro and Slovenia, the hosts will have no easy passage to the main round.

“We start the EURO with a rematch of the last Olympics final, so we will get right into it,” Leynaud says. “Our aim is to win all three games and qualify for the main round with the maximum amount of points. Problem is, I’m sure the other three teams will have the same ambition.”


TEXT: Kevin Domas / ew
 
Share
CONTACT FORM