Merel Van Dongen

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CF Monterrey’s marquee signing this January transfer window was bringing over Merel van Dongen from Atlético de Madrid. Last Friday, the Dutchman was presented to the media alongside Ana Lucía Martínez and Juana Plata.

During her press conference with the Monterrey media, she clarified that her commitment is to celebrate as a champion with Rayadas.

“I am a central defender; I hate losing; it shows in every training session, in games with my wife at home, fighting for every meter on the field,” van Dongen said (h/t Once Diario). “We have to fight for every meter. If we want to be champions, we have to give 200 percent, [and] 100 percent is not enough; we have to give 200 percent.”

What does Merel van Dongen bring to Rayadas?

Questioned about the leadership she can have on and off the field, the former Atlético de Madrid player stated that she possesses the quality; however, she will not try to impose it in a place where she arrives as a new member.

“It’s true that I am new, and I don’t want to force myself to be a leader, but it’s also true that in all the teams I’ve been on, it comes naturally to me to talk a lot, to see my teammates play well. That’s what I try to do: send positive messages. 

“I try to be a leader, but right now, I’m new; I have to understand my role. There are girls playing here for many years, and I don’t want to come in leading someone who has been leading this team for three or four or five years. I am going to be Merel.”