New goalkeeper Jeni Currie says she could not pass up the chance to be part of what she rates as a “really good” project at Aberdeen Women.
The 27-year-old goalkeeper was one of four new Reds Women recruits who penned a deal until the end of the campaign during the January transfer window.
She is no stranger to the SWPL, having previously played for Hibernian, Hamilton Accies and Hearts.
Since joining Aberdeen, Currie has started in all three matches the team have played and will be in line to feature in the fourth round Scottish Cup clash against Spartans at Ainslie Park on Sunday afternoon.
The ambitions of the Dons, sold to her by women’s team manager Clint Lancaster as a project, was what attracted her to a move to the north-east.
“I think it was when I first spoke to Clint and got the ambitions of the club and how they want to progress the women’s team,” said Currie, explaining why she signed on.
“I thought it was really good and something that I wanted to be a part of.
“It was the way he talked about the plan for the future and where they want to be over the next few seasons. He sold it as a project and that is something that I want to be a part of.”
Currie keen to make most of every opportunity
Although Currie is excited to see how things might look for Aberdeen long-term, her focus is set on the rest of the campaign and seeing out her short-term deal.
“I’m just focusing on the rest of the season right now,” said Currie. “It is hard to look too far ahead because then you can lose your focus.
“We have got some really big games coming up over the rest of the season.”
Currie boasts an impressive CV, having played in the Uefa Champions League knock-outs with Hibs and experiencing League Cup trophy success with Sion Swifts in Northern Ireland.
But a spell with Pirin in Bulgaria in 2020 reflected Currie’s willingness to try something different.
“When an opportunity comes up that really piques my interest then I’m all in and will really go for it,” said Currie.
“Bulgaria was an interesting one – my agent knew the manager of the men’s team and he said the women’s team were needing a goalkeeper. I just thought: ‘why not?’, and went for it.
“It was a different country, a different culture and a different style of football. It all happened very quickly and I just decided to go for it.”
The mental side of a goalkeeper’s game
Although she is one of the newest faces through the door, Currie is now Aberdeen’s most senior player.
And despite having accumulated plenty of top-level experience over the years since making her senior debut at Hearts, the goalkeeper is always striving to get better.
“I want to keep on trying to improve,” said Currie. “It doesn’t matter what age you are.
“I would say there are still improvements I can make and I just want to keep learning and keep pushing on.
“I think the difference between younger and older goalkeepers is the mental side of the game, because sometimes you can get caught up in your own mistakes and it can be hard to come back from it
“I just try and take every mistake as a learning opportunity in training and in every game.”
Currie looks to learn from her mistakes, but knows a key part of goalkeeper’s mindset is not to dwell on the negatives too much.
Her education helps with this, as she earned a Bachelors degree in psychology at Western Illinois University in the United States and graduated with a MSc in the Psychology of Mental Health from the University of Edinburgh.
“It really has helped me move on from mistakes in the sense of not letting them play over and over in my head,” said Currie.
“It’s not just football, but goalkeeping itself. There are a lot of highs and lows, so it has really helped me manage that.”