Pantene Moment of Strength: Chloe Logarzo's journey to find herself outside of football

Chloe Logarzo fell in love with football from a young age. She started playing at six years old for her local club, the Carlingford Redbacks, however, unlike her fellow Matildas, she did not play at an elite level until years later, being initially rejected from elite football due to her short stature.

Logarzo notes that because of this, she had a relatively normal childhood, able to travel and be a 'normal kid.'

She began her professional career with her hometown club, Sydney FC, making two appearances in the 2011-12 W-League season. 

Logarzo would go on to make her debut for the Matildas as an 18-year-old in a 2-0 victory over China. She would heartbreakingly not be included in the squad for the 2014 Asian Cup.

She moved to the USA with hopes of improving, playing semi-professional football with Colorado Pride where she earned rookie of the year. Logarzo had a feeling that she had made a big mistake, letting her dream of representing her country slip away.

When I was in my early 20s, I had this massive identity crisis

Her move back to Australia saw her rejoin Sydney FC. She felt the pressure to succeed, with this mental battle suffocating her game and seeing her remain on the bench for most of the season.

Logarzo put everything into her football journey and her goal of getting back into the national team, however, her dreams took another hit, when she was excluded from the 2015 Women’s World Cup squad. This exclusion put Chloe into a spiral, as her dedication to the sport had not been rewarded with a call-up.

She described this point in her life as “rock bottom.”

For my whole life, I have dedicated every second eating, sleeping, dreaming about football

The midfielder describes this as the hardest time in her career, and as the moment that she most needed her inner strength. Logarzo described that she went down a dark path, not knowing who she was outside football.

She states that outside of football she had no friends and no hobbies, which Logarzo playfully says was her own fault.

She recognises her laser-focus on the 2015 WWC call-up as her putting all her eggs in one basket, so, when she was not rewarded with a call-up, she felt like she had nothing to look forward to.

Chloe was her own biggest critic and her hardest judge, so when she wasn’t included in the squad, she felt worthless.  

Looking back on the exclusion from the squad, Chloe is now extremely grateful for the experience in her late 20s, noting that it helped her find herself, not only learning about what she loved outside football but also helping her find inner strength.

This time away from football, although not of her own volition, helped Logarzo find a passion for things she never thought she would.

She now finds enjoyment in architecture, going bouldering and scuba diving.

This strength and resilience has shone through in her football, but the place where her strength has impacted her life the most is in her personal life.

She now finds joy outside of football and is starting to know who Chloe Logarzo is off the pitch.  

She was able to get back to her best with this time away to rebuild, helping the Matildas advance to the quarter-finals in Rio 2016. She would also travel to France with the Matildas for the 2019 Women’s World Cup, where she was back in the starting team and notably scoring a magical goal against Brazil in the ‘Miracle in Montpellier.’

Although her celebration after this goal was dedicated to injured teammate Laura Brock, it embodied all that Logarzo had been through.

Her strength to get through her darkest moments to score for her country showed her true resilience.

Logarzo has shown that mental strength and resilience must mirror physical ability. Her ability to rebuild and utilise a growth mindset after disappointment is an inspiration to all, showing that failure is not in the falling down, but in the staying down.