Goalkeeper coach Busby showers Schneider with praise

SHERDON COWAN
AT THE 2019 FIFA
WOMEN'S WORLD CUP FINALS
In France

Sunday, June 16, 2019

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GRENOBLE, France — Hubert Busby remembers the pressure of being called upon to make crucial saves during his playing days.

He did it while plying his trade for Jamaica's senior Reggae Boyz and the various clubs he has represented.

So when Busby, the Reggae Girlz goalkeeper coach, saw Sydney Schneider in action against Brazil here at the Fifa Women's World Cup, he was not only impressed by her concentration level, but extremely proud about her rapid growth in a budding career.

A lot of the talk from that opening Group C game for the Reggae Girlz surrounded Schneider's commanding display in and around her box, as well as the impressive save to deny Andressa from the penalty spot.

That was one of several key moments for the young custodian who came up big for her team, despite Brazil coming away 3-0 winners.

“(None) of us can't take credit for Syd's God-given ability... what we do look for is her ability to be receptive to learning. She is open-minded and we always talk about a growth mindset and developing and she is open to listening to things and working on it.

“My role really is to get her mentally prepared and that is one of the things we have talked about in the last couple of weeks, especially during the camps,” Busby told the Jamaica Observer.

“She is at her best when she is just fun and just enjoying the game instead of over thinking things and now that she is just being herself, being in the moment enjoying it her expression and her play has shown so credit to her,” Busby added.

A message from Jamaican sprint legend Usain Bolt and former United States women's goaltender Hope Solo, was just part of the huge response to Schneider's performance against Brazil.

Even in defeat, she became a star. Still only 19 years old, Busby pointed out that the world is yet to see the best of the UNC Wilmington student as she has immense scope for improvement.

“Her potential is huge and we try not to speak about it too much, just because we don't need to add any pressure to her, but you look at all the tools of a modern-day goalkeeper... she has them all; All the qualities to be successful on the international stage, but again its just for her to continue to do what she is doing which is to be focused and ready to grow, knowing that the best is yet to come,” he reasoned.

Though the following performance in a 0-5 loss to Italy was not a reflection of the one against Brazil, Schneider once again showed her capabilities display stopping another penalty this time from Juventus player Cristiana Girelli.

However, checks by VAR revealed that the 5ft 10in goaltender had stepped off her line. That experience, Busby pointed out, is apart of Schneider's learning curb, especially given the extreme mental demands of the position.

“The position is 90 per cent mental; its the ability to know that you are standing only one place and if you are called upon you have to play and know that if your were to make a mistake it could result in a goal. So its about knowing how to reset your mind for the next play, but the work is done on the training pitch and we are currently working on that,” he said.

And while Schneider has been in the spotlight lately, the Canadian-born Busby expressed his joy in working with all the country's top young goalkeepers.

These include Nicole McClure, who pulled off two stunning saves during the qualifiers, as well as Canadian-based Yazmeen Jameison and local-based Chris-Ann Chambers.

He is eager to once again hit the pitch with his goaltenders after the team arrived back in Grenoble ahead of their final Group C contest against Italy on Tuesday.

“We always work on the basic and focus on just allowing them to go out there and be in the right mind, but I said it all along, we have four number ones and I tell them that every goalkeeper in this World Cup is a number one for their respective team and so for us, we have a lot to look forward to,” he reasoned.


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