Matildas goalkeeper Mackenzie Arnold did Australia proud as the women’s football team made their way into the semi-finals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup.
The Australian team lost to England 1-3 and will now compete against Sweden this weekend in the playoff for third place.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: How Mackenzie Arnold became a goalkeeper.
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Arnold hit the spotlight after her incredible performance in the quarterfinals against France, where she saved three penalties in a shootout.
And while Sam Kerr is perhaps the best-known player in the Matildas, Arnold has her own strong fan base.
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On Instagram, she shares insights into her life as a professional footballer, but she also shares personal moments from her life and her relationship with Scottish player Kirsty Smith.
Smith has been watching Arnold’s World Cup fortunes from afar, as she is back in the UK training with West Ham ahead of the new English Women’s Super League season.
Left: Mackenzie Arnold with Kirsty Smith. Right: Arnold after the Matildas lost to England in the FIFA Women’s World Cup semi-final. Credit: Instagram/Getty
But the 29-year-old is clearly proud of her partner’s efforts, recently sharing a snap of a billboard picture showing Arnold in action with the words “Mackenzie ‘Brickwall’ Arnold” emblazoned across the top.
“Unreal. So proud of you!” Smith wrote after the Matildas’ exciting win against France in the quarters.
Kirsty Smith comments on a Mackenzie Arnold billboard picture; and Kirsty in Greece (right). Credit: Instagram/Kirsty Smith
Smith, who plays for West Ham as well as the Scottish national team, is a former Manchester United player, joining their inaugural women’s team in 2018.
She also has an accounting and financing degree after completing studies in Edinburgh.
The pair met in 2021 as West Ham teammates, but didn’t go public with their relationship until this year.
In February, Arnold shared her first photo with Smith on her Instagram account as part of a carousel of photos taken in London.
A month later they confirmed their relationship via another photo posted to Instagram.
The couple took a trip to Greece in June, with Smith captioning the holiday snaps: “Full heart in Rhodes.”
Scottish football player Kirsty Smith is in a relationship with Matildas goalkeeper Mackenzie Arnold. Credit: Instagram/Kirsty Smith
“Love you,” Arnold wrote back.
As the World Cup kicked off, Smith commented on a photo of Arnold on the pitch.
“Ain’t I lucky!” she wrote.
In another post, she wrote: “You’re a keeper!”
In a recent video posted by the Matildas, Arnold explained how she became a goalkeeper.
Mackenzie Arnold after the Matildas’ win against France at the FIFA Women’s World Cup. Credit: Instagram/Mackenzie Arnold
“The coach was basically like, ‘look, you’re probably not going to make it as a fullback, but we do need a goalkeeper, so if you want to jump in we’d be grateful to have you’,” she said of her early playing days.
“I didn’t; I said ‘no, absolutely not, I’m not going to be a goalkeeper.’
“And then fast forward I think two or three years, a club team I was playing for needed a goalkeeper again at the time.
“So I was like, ‘you know what, I’ll just try it out, see what happens.’
“And I really enjoyed it, so it sort of took off from there.”
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