Against Häcken on Tuesday last week, Ada Hegerberg was replaced with ten minutes left to play - her first appearance on the football field in almost two years.

- It does not feel like I needed those 20 months to get a reminder of how much I love football, but it has definitely made me appreciate the sport even more.

It is my biggest passion and I feel like a small child again when I play football and go to training, she says in an interview with the BBC.

When the 26-year-old was injured in January last year, she was at the peak of her career.

Four months earlier, she had set a new goal record for women in the Champions League - 53 hits in 50 matches. 

- I know I was at my best before these 20 months, but I am realistic when it comes to patience and I know that a lot of mental and physical work has to be done.

"Extreme experience"

She describes the time off the football field as a "fight".

It got extra tough when the corona pandemic struck.

- I would describe it as a struggle because it has been an extreme experience.

To top it all, covid-19 made it even more special.

- Being separated from the team for so long was really a challenge.

With Hegerberg away, Lyon failed to defend the Champions League title for the sixth year in a row.

The French big club was knocked out in the quarterfinals and Barcelona won the tournament.

- I have great faith that we will do well this season, because when you know how to win, then you also know how to continue to win.

CLIP: Here Hegerberg is hugged by Schelin (5/10 2021)

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A tearful Ada Hegerberg was hugged by Lotta Schelin after the match.

Photo: Bildbyrån / SVT

Keywords: häcken, lot, child, comeback, injury absence, meeting, hegerberg, champions league, star, more.it, football, lyon, passion, challenge., training