Van Egmond ‘one up’ on Dad Gary

Emily van Egmond has played at World Cups and is now set to light up the Games as one of the world’s best central midfielders.

All this should make her father Gary proud, though no doubt there'll be some banter between dad and daughter. 

Emily’s Dad is former Caltex Socceroo defender Gary, who played at the Games in Seoul in 1988. However, he never played at a senior World Cup like his daughter, who starred in 2015 and 2011. 

Attack Australia’s most potent weapon at Games

“Me and Dad always used to have a bit of a joke that I was the only one who has been to a World Cup and he was the only one who has gone to a Games," she tells 

“Now I’m going to Rio and I can one-up him in that regard. 

Emily van Egmond battles for possession against Japan.

"But I obviously owe [my parents ] a lot for what I’ve been able to achieve and the chance I’ve got now to go to the Games.

“The older I got the more and more I wanted to tick that off my bucket list to go to the Games

“I was speaking to the old man a lot about it and it really drove me to really be in a position to qualify.

“And lucky enough we did that. Hopefully we can now take that success we had in Japan to the Games with us."

And like most Australian footballers, she finds Brazil an inspiration. And the Newcastle-born midfielder hopes she might even cross paths with one of the world's best in the men's game. 

"I’m definitely excited to experience the culture they have in Brazil. It’s a massive footballing culture and what better way to do that with them including Neymar in the men’s Brazil soccer team which is there. 

The Westfeild Matildas celebrate Emily van Egmond's late equaliser against China.

"I imagine there’s going to be quite a bit of hype around the place. I’m just excited to be there and soak it all up.

If I got the chance to watch Neymar play it would be awesome."

She added the opening group game is the only focus ahead of the Games, though she's not underestimating anyone in Australia's group. 

"Everyone has that in the back of our mind but the most important thing is to focus on that first game against Canada. 

"If we can get a result in that game that can set us up quite nicely to get out of the group stage but it's definitely not going to be easy with the group we’ve been drawn. 

Westfield Matildas midfielder Emily van Egmond celebrates her late goal against China.

And then the big powerhouse in Germany and you can’t underestimate Zimbabwe because they are a little bit of the unknown. 

"The group in general is very tough and we have a massive challenge ahead but it’s one we’re up for."