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From Cancer to Superstar: How Linda Caicedo Became an Inspiration to All Athletes

From cancer to superstar: How Linda Caicedo became an inspiration to all athletes. The Young Colombian has already made a name for herself after her breakout with the Colombian national team. At only the age of 18, she plays for Real Madrid and is already one of the best female footballers in the world. After scoring her first World Cup goal against South Korea, she has made her dream a reality, but it all could have ended earlier in her life. 

When she was 14 years old, Caicedo played for Deportivo Cali and was already an outstanding rookie. From there she began to play for the Colombian national team. Just after her 15th birthday, Caicedo began to experience stomach pain. After several clinic visits, the test showed that she had a stomach tumor that ended up being ovarian cancer. 

Her biggest fear during her illness was if she would ever play soccer again. Because her diagnosis came during the COVID Pandemic, she used that time to receive chemotherapy for her cancer. In March of 2020 she underwent surgery to remove her tumor and began her journey to recovery.  

In September of 2020, Linda Caicedo received the best news she’s heard in a long time: she was cancer free. She later returned to Deportivo Cali to resume her soccer career. It did not take her long to return to her form. However, she had to deal with losing her hair. She played with a wig until her hair grew back because she felt self-conscious playing without hair.  

In 2021, Colombia suffered an outbreak of protest between the people and the government that made access to health care clinics difficult, especially for Caicedo. She took her bike to the other side of Cali just to get to her appointments, with the streets and cars burned to the ground.

The Colombian press call Caicedo the “Colombia Neymar” for her mindset and urge to play. Linda Caicedo became the leading goal scorer in the Copa Libertadores in 2021. In 2022, she played at both the U20 and U17 World Cup. During the U17 World Cup, she led Colombia to the finals, where they lost to Spain 1-0. She was awarded the silver ball and the bronze boot.  

Earlier this year, she joined Real Madrid and already scored two goals in 10 appearances with the club. Now that she is playing in the World Cup, she has scored in three World Cup in a span of a year, continuing her legacy in the sport before the age of 20.  

Linda Caicedo never thought of giving up her career while battling cancer three years ago. Because of her mindset, she has become one of the best players in the world as she is prepared to take her nation far during the World Cup in Australia/New Zealand.  

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