Former UNC women’s soccer star Crystal Dunn said it wasn’t until she was a teenager that she played with other Black athletes.
“For a long time, I was the only Black girl,” Dunn said in a conversation with Brianna Pinto. “I’m sure you’ve had similar experiences.”
Pinto — currently a junior on the UNC women’s soccer team — hosted Dunn for a conversation about their careers as Black athletes in the world of soccer. Dunn played at Carolina from 2010 to 2013 and is currently a member of the U.S. women’s national team and the NC Courage of the NWSL.
Dunn said there weren’t many Black soccer players to look up to while growing up, so she turned to different sports.
“We know the reality is that there weren’t that many Black soccer players to look up to growing up, so I always loved Serena Williams,” she said.
Pinto, who also plays for the U.S. women’s national youth teams, echoed Dunn’s sentiments.
“Having people that look like you achieving high things, I think that’s so important. It’s so cool because it makes your dream feel more tangible because you get to see people just like you living your dream and it serves as a source of inspiration.”