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Chinese starlet Wang keeps cool nerves about AFC nomination

(Xinhua)    14:47, November 20, 2018

PARIS -- Chinese women's football hopeful Wang Shuang maintained stable mindset towards her latest nomination for the AFC Female Player of the Year award, while regarding it as justification for her performance in the national team and huge boost in confidence when playing in Europe.

The 23-year-old Wang, playing in French league's Paris Saint-Germain, told Xinhua on Monday, "I stayed quite calm when learning about my nomination. However, it's undoubtedly huge boost in my confidence, and also testifies my performance in the Chinese team."

Since landing in the French capital early in September, Wang has notched four goals and four assists in 11 appearances for PSG.

The stat became more justified considering her deadlock-breaking goal against European powerhouse Lyon on Sunday, as she interceptted the pass by goalkeeper before finishing a cool-minded slot home in the 15th minute.

Wang's goal earned PSG a 1-1 home draw to snap Lyon's nine-game winning streak into the season, trailing the latter two points on second.

Wang, who had received the invitation from AFC just before Sunday's duel, said that she had just concentrated on the upcoming clash.

"I was quite excied when earning my nomination for the AFC Youth Player of the Year back in 2013. This time, with a crucial match against Lyon ahead, I just focused on that. But after all, I was still happy about it," she said.

Wang had conquerred the French league in her debut by scoring a stunner in September. She also scored in Champions League for PSG, who had already made into the last eight.

"Every goal on European stage means a lot to me. I feel honored competing against Lyon, not to mention the goal. It offers huge motivation for me," Wang pointed out.

Feeling increasingly familiar with teammates, coach and club staff over the past two months, Wang strives to do more to repay the recognition.

She had shown her willingness and diligence on the pitch against Lyon, covering a team-high running distance of 11.5 km, also setting her personal record.

"I need to become stronger to better play the connecting role within the team," said Wang.

For the national side, Wang underwent a bit turbulence in her performance, while securing the ticket to the FIFA Women's World Cup in France through third place finish at the Asian Cup and claiming the Asian Games silver medal.

"I was somehow affected by the change of head coach in the national team earlier this year. I felt that it was during the Asian Games that I could totally unleash my ability," said Wang, who is bidding to become the fourth Chinese player to win the continental award after Sun Wen, Bai Jie and Ma Xiaoxu.

However, she faces stiff competition from Australian player Samantha Kerr, and Japan's Saki Kumagai currently playing in Lyon.

"I cannot guarantee that I will win this time, but it's obviously great motivation to me and recognition of my performance in the national side," said Wang, scheduled to fly to Oman next Monday for the awarding ceremony.

"It further motivates me to do my best for the national team at next year's World Cup," she added.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Shi Xi, Bianji)

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