Thursday, September 21, 2023

Sandra Paños, Queens League ambassador: “Piqué is a visionary and knows that supporting us can be a winning horse”

After several months of waiting, the queens league it is already a reality. The competition driven by Gerard Piqué kicked off this Saturday with an opening day full of emotion in which the players left glimpses of their potential at the Cupra Arena. Only a few minutes were needed to verify that the female version of the successful kings league it will be quite a spectacle.

Among the soccer players who met in this first round, one of the outstanding ones was white cros (1997, Girona), whose performance allowed his team, Kunitaswill take the victory against Porcinas FC, in what was the first penalty shootout of the season. The group chaired by the Argentine journalist Morena Beltran and the footballer Sergio ‘Kun’ Aguero (in its male version), managed to unbalance the score in his favor after regulation time that ended in a draw.

Cros signed a great performance and converted his first goal in a match in which He was chosen as MVP. “I am very happy for the debut and for having beaten Porcinas, because we did not expect them to have such a level. They had Melanie Serrano -ex-Spanish international soccer player for FC Barcelona who has won 7 Iberdrola leagues, 7 Queen’s Cups and one Champions League- and facing people of this level is great, but it’s also very difficult”, says the ’11’ of Kunitas with the voice something touched by “everything lived the weekend”.

The Girona was able to show what she is capable of with a ball at her feet and her ability to move the ball into the back of the net. The area is your comfort zone and that’s how it has been since last year his coach in the Galician PM Cold moved her from her usual left winger position to play attacking point. Now, in the Unió Esportiva Cornellà continues as a reference in attack. “I feel good in the area, waiting for any ball to put it inside”, describe.

Greed may be innate, but the talent to turn everything he touches into a goal doesn’t emerge overnight. At 26 years old, Cros has a long career in federated football. La Canya, Les Preses, Girona, L’Estartir, Sant Pere Pescador, Olímpico de Madrid, Friol and Cornellá are the colors she has worn since, at the age of 12, her parents gave in and allowed her to sign up for soccer. “My mother and father prioritized skiing over playing soccer. But on a summer campus, a monitor, who was the coach of a women’s team, saw me play, and she gave me a piece of paper with a phone to give it to my parents. I came home very excited and from then on my story with football began ”, she recalls.

An exciting challenge

Fourteen years later, Cros maintains his love relationship with this sport, which has perhaps now been an even greater challenge for him. Despite not having followed the Kings League exhaustively, the striker decided to sign up when a friend wrote to him informing him of Piqué’s initiative to create a female version. “I put several goals together in a short video and wrote a cover letter to try my luck,” recalls the player.

“I had a colleague next to me who touched me and said: ‘Blanca, they called you'”

Blanca Cros – forward for Kunitas

After overcoming that first cut, Cros participated on April 16 in the draft held at the Cupra Arena, where he met several well-known rivals with whom he had met on the pitch in Catalonia. Among the more than 230 players, Cros was the first selected by Kunitas: “I did not expect them to say my name. I had a colleague next to me who touched me and said: ‘Blanca, they called you.’ I left a little nervous, but very happy. It’s been several weeks and I still can’t believe it.”

Since this new adventure started, the Girona woman has seen how the workload has doubled, as will combine the end of the league with Cornellà with the Queens League. “Two weeks ago the entire Kunitas team went to La Cerdanya for four days to train and ‘make friends’. And now we already have three sessions a week. I think we are one of the teams that trains the most”, explains the footballer.

Women’s football in the spotlight

Soccer players like Blanca Cros, who have played at a high level throughout their career but for various reasons have not reached professional soccer, now face a league that attracts great media attention, where very important audiences are expected. This has been seen on the first day of the Queens League Oysho, which was followed live by an average of 225,400 devices, with a peak above 349,500 devices during the match between Porcinas FC and Kunitas.

With the aim that these figures continue to grow, the goalkeeper of FC Barcelona has joined the project of Gerard Piqué and Ibai Llanos Sandra Cloths, who will act as an ambassador for Porcinas. “I think that the participation of some professional players can give the league a lot of impact. For me, being able to be part of this is a pleasure and I will try to give it support and visibility”, says Paños.

In addition, the Alicante goalkeeper believes that this competition will show all the people who follow her that “There are different ways to enjoy football” and, at the same time, it is a “great opportunity” for the participants to get a little closer to professionalism. “They are going to enjoy it a lot, it is a new experience and they have to benefit from everything that comes,” advises Paños and adds that “high-quality players are going to be discovered and we will see interesting things.”

“I hope that it represents a step forward and that it makes a ‘boom’ in the public and people begin to see the quality that there is in the feminine too”

Blanca Cros – forward for Kunitas

Cros thinks the same, that highlights the high level of her teammates and rivals in the Queens. “This league is not going to disappoint and I hope that it represents a step forward and that it makes a ‘boom’ in the public and people begin to see the quality that there is in the women’s league as well”.

Mediaset joins forces

A few days before the start of the first day, Gerard Piqué announced the collaboration of the Queens League Oysho with traditional television. Thus, every Saturday the game that is played at 8:00 p.m. in the afternoon can be seen on the channel Four, something that has valued Kunitas’ forward very positively. “That we can be seen on television is very important, because this league has been created in less than a year and if they (Kosmos) have succeeded, the women’s First Division league can also. And, up to now, there has not been that visibility of Primera Iberdrola”, defends Cros.

The Mediaset chain will also broadcast live the match of the same time slot of the Kings League, which takes place on Sundays.

But, in addition to the fact that the match can be seen on a television channel with the highest audience in our country, the Queens League has also wanted implement equality between men and women in other aspects. Without any difference. Neither in wages, nor playing fields, nor in regulations…

This equality in all areas, regardless of gender, is highly valued by Blanca Cros, who says she is “very happy that they are the same conditions, because We don’t have to feel the inequality that has always existed, unfortunately”.

Women’s football is a reality and all girls have to have opportunities

Sandra Paños – Barcelona goalkeeper and Porcinas ambassador

Along the same lines, Paños describes the decision as “very successful”. “In our club, in Barça, they are betting on us. Women’s football is a reality and all girls have to have opportunities. Piqué is a visionary and knows that supporting us can become a winning horse”, affirms Sandra Paños.

Sandra Paños, in a warm-up with FC Barcelona. PS

Beyond a competition

The Queens League is presented as a form of entertainment and fun, but its borders go much further. If the forecasts come true and the women’s competition is similar to the audience figures achieved by the Kings, the impact of the tournament will go far beyond mere fun, as it can be an impulse For all those girls who want to practice soccer.

“I encourage all the little ones to watch this league, which I can give that plus to those who are now like me when I was little and my parents did not want me to sign up for a team. In the end, women’s football is many years away from men’s, but, little by little, it is progressing in visibility, wages and quality and in the end we will achieve it”, says the Cornellà player.

Uncertainty as the norm

One of the points on which the success of both the Kings League and Queens is based is the importance of emotion and uncertainty. Its rules play with chance and allow matches to never be decided before the final whistle.

These rules trap you and have you hooked on the television”

Sandra Paños – FC Barcelona goalkeeper

For the Barcelona goalkeeper “You cannot compare” these formats with professional football. “What makes this new competition special is that you have to be aware of the entire game, because in two minutes the result can be completely changed. These rules trap you and have you hooked on the TV”, he points out.

Sandra Paños speaks of the Queens League with great enthusiasm, in love with the project in which she has become involved as an ambassador, at least for now. And it is that, the footballer from Alicante does not rule out defending the goal of one of the teams in the queens league in the future. “I hope that when I think about retiring, Queens will still be there.because that will be a good sign that everything has turned out well and that it has been a product that has come to stay”, says the goalkeeper, who admits that if she were not a professional, she probably would have done it to try to access the draft.

Blanca Cros also looks to the future. But to a closer future, specifically at the bottom of the league, where she hopes to have the opportunity to experience a magical encounter, like the one the Kings League boys experienced in a packed Camp Nou, in which the fireworks lit up an evening to remember. “I don’t know if it will be played in the Barça field because now they are going to make reforms, but I hope they look for another stadium with similar characteristics and that all the people who want can come. I still don’t want to imagine that game. I have never played something like this in my life”, says the MVP of Kunitas with emotion. Because that’s what Queens is about, emotion.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest article