Lancashire teen is Britain’s first female freestyle professional

As the Women’s World Cup in Canada hits our screens, a young female footballer is making waves across the globe.

Liv Cooke, 15, from Leyland, has just become the UK’s only professional female football freestyler.

I was just doing tricks with my brothers and then I started watching some of the best freestylers because I wanted to learn and then it has all gone from there.

Liv Cooke

The former Preston North End and Blackburn Rovers Ladies player’s skills have catapulted her to fame performing in front of thousands at jam-packed football grounds and rubbing shoulders with celebrities.

But the humble youngster says she fell into the career and honed her skills by having a kickaround with her brothers in the back garden.

She said: “It is mad, it doesn’t feel real!

“I was just doing tricks with my brothers and then I started watching some of the best freestylers because I wanted to learn and then it has all gone from there.

“Freestyle is more independent than football and it is all about expressing yourself.

“I quit playing team football so that I could concentrate on freestyle and I’m hoping to make a career out of it.”

The teenager has just left Balshaws Church of England High School and wants to prove that women can succeed in sport.

She said: “I want to use my role to promote girls in sport and show that girls can do it too.

“I’ve performed on the pitch during half-time in front of thousands of people at Blackburn Rovers’ ground and Manchester City’s stadium.

“I went to the Nickelodeon awards and I met lots of famous people like Pixie Lott and Diversity.

“It is just really good fun. It is amazing.”