Spain’s Women’s Soccer Team Qualifies for Nations League Final Four Despite Defeat Against Italy

The Spanish women’s team got on the first train to the Final Four of the Nations League despite their painful defeat against Italy. Those of Montse Tomé, who had chained eight consecutive victories and had not lost since the group stage of the World Cup against Japan, were surprised by a very serious Italy and fell 2-3, but took advantage of Sweden’s unexpected setback against Switzerland to qualify for the Nations playoff League and in February they will have the opportunity to fight for a ticket to the Paris Olympic Games, the first in their history.

In a luxurious atmosphere at the Pasarón Municipal Stadium, with a full house, the world champions succumbed to a lethal Italy in the second half with goals from Giancinti, Cambiaghi and Linari. On the part of Spain, they noted Athenea del Castillo and Esther González.

Tomé opted for a starting team with up to six Barça players from the start, again with Cata Coll under the sticks after having opted against Switzerland for Misa Rodríguez, and with Jenni Hermoso in the center of the field to take the place of Alexia Putellas, absent due to discomfort and who said she would not risk it. The bet in attack was Mariona Caldentey along with two young players who are strong like the Barça player Salma Paralluelo and the Madrid player Athenea del Castillo.

Precisely the latter began generating the greatest danger for La Roja with its insistence on attack. After six minutes Mariona opened the scoring, but the lineman marked offside. The start of the match was electric, with the Spanish playing quickly to advance meters in order to generate danger. This is how Athenea del Castillo’s goal came in the eleventh minute: the player feinted in front of Boattin inside the area and managed to get away until she could hit the shot through the short post. A real great goal to add four in this Nations League.

Spain moved the ball without problems in the center of the field to enhance its quality and talent in that area. Italy could do little to stop local pressure. At 20 minutes Tere Abelleira’s chance came: Jenni Hermoso forced a corner and Tere poked her with a cross, but Giuliani rejected it with his fists. The public did not hesitate to chant the name of her countrywoman.

Salma Paralluelo tried it in the 28th minute on the left side. The Barcelona player did not stop creating danger in search of the second goal.

After half an hour came the surprise: Sweden had been surpassed by Switzerland and Spain had already qualified for the Final Four, regardless of the result. However, the only idea was to win. Italy got their act together before the break, hoping to give the counterattack a scare and making the Spanish’s actions uncomfortable. Imperial was Manchester City centre-back Laia Aleixandri in the 35th minute to block the attack of the Italian team, which was getting excited, but they reached half-time with the minimum advantage.

Spain had 68% of the possession compared to Italy’s 32%. At the restart, Lucía García came on for Athenea del Castillo and Esther had not yet had time to jump onto the field for Aitana before Italy took advantage of the confusion to score the tie. Giacinti scored after cutting twice past a defender before shooting and beating Cata Coll. Total confusion.

Despite the turbulent start to the second half, Spain remained immersed in its one-touch match plan with its sights set on the rival goal. Laia Alexandri came close to scoring in the 52nd minute with a powerful header, but she narrowly missed the goal.

Italy pressed, looking to recover the ball and try to turn the game around and thus came their reward with the second goal in the 57th minute, in a great action by Giugliano that Cambiaghi finished off to turn the game around. A jug of cold water for Spain. Spurred on by their fans shouting ‘Yes, we can’, La Roja launched all their machinery to turn the game around.

The visiting team was getting excited and thus the third arrived, after a corner kick in favor of Italy that Linari finished off at the far post. La Azzurra scored more goals in one match than in the previous four. Tere Abelleira tried it with a long shot that hit the crossbar. And in the 76th minute, Esther González closed the gap after a good pass from Tere Abelleira found the Andalusian forward and she whipped herself to close the gap.

Cata Coll prevented the goal in the 79th minute with a save on a shot from mid-range by Galli, which ran into the miraculous hand of the Barcelona goalkeeper. Esther and Olga Carmona tried, but the comeback was not achieved. Sad defeat but goal achieved

2023-12-01 22:51:56
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