Boulleau: 'Paris est magique!'
After announcing her decision to retire after 13 years at Paris Saint-Germain, Laure Boulleau joined PSG.fr to look back at her incredible career...
Laure, it must have been a tough decision to retire...
"I had been thinking about it for a while... I didn't decide overnight... I think it's the right time. I am starting to feel a bit tired because I have given so much for so many years. I always gave it 100% on the pitch. Now, I'm starting to feel a bit tired, physically and mentally. I have been pushing beyond my limits for a while now and it takes its toll. I feel that this was the right time to move on."
How are you approaching the next chapter of your life?
"Even if I feel ready, I am a little scared! I have been playing football for 20 years! For a long time, I thought that was all I could do. But when I thought about it, I realised I could make a difference in other fields as well and that helped my make this decision. I'm sad, because I'm crazy about football, but I know I can do something else. I'm happy because I'm finishing where I wanted to be, on the pitch. I didn't want to finish on a failure and this season has been like a bonus. I don't regret making all the efforts to live this final season and it has been incredible with my teammates. Before leaving, I've been trying to pass on as much of my experience as possible to the youngsters, and I'm very proud."
Why did you choose Paris all those years ago?
"When I was little, I loved Paris Saint-Germain for everything the club and the city represented, and for all those emblematic players… Paris est magique! That's why I signed here and I always felt at home here. The years went by and I never wanted to leave. Other teams that were winning a lot of trophies, such as Lyon, often came to convince me to leave, but something always kept me here... I just couldn't leave!"
Do you have a highlight of your 13 years at the club?
"I have so many! I especially remember our first ever game at the Parc des Princes. The girls playing at the Parc… It was almost a revolution! We felt so proud, we felt like we were writing a bit of history, that we were pioneers! It was an important match against Juvisy and we won. It's an incredible memory."
Do you feel any extra pressure heading into your last ever game which is also the final of the Coupe de France against Lyon?
"Obviously it feels a little bit different, but overall, I'm pretty relaxed. I think I have already dealt with the mental approach. We are ending the season with a final and we have reached our main objective which was to qualify for the Champions League. Now we have nothing to lose and that is what I'll be telling my teammates. I want us to give it everything, to believe in ourselves. I know we can do it, and it could be an exceptional night. Now we have to go out and do it, give it our maximum to have no regrets."