Friday, September 22, 2023

Vilda: “He has suffered more than he should have from what has been seen on the pitch”

The player of the Spanish team Ivana Andres affirmed this friday not being fully “aware yet” of what the qualification to the semifinals of the World Cup for Australia and New Zealand means after eliminating the Netherlands (2-1) in the quarterfinals. “I think we are still not aware of the one we just rolled. The team has done a sensational job, we have left everything on the field and we have achieved it, we continue to make history and we want to continue making it, ”he assured.

Regarding the possible rivals in the semifinals, Japan or Sweden, the captain assured that “at this point it doesn’t matter, both Sweden and Japan are going to be a tough semifinal.” “We are going to have to give up our skin, our souls and that’s it, no matter who the rival is, we will be ready,” she added.

Andrés, who suffered a micro-tear in the soleus that forced her to stay on the bench against Japan, stated that she was “well, recovered and available” to “help the team in everything” that is needed.

For his part, Jorge Vilda, the Spanish coach, assured that “it is impressive how they have continued to fight against adversity” and that right now “the adrenaline is through the roof” with the pass to the semifinals. “It has been a game more suffered than it should be from what has been seen in the field, I think. Especially for the first part. Yes, it’s true that in the second part we lost aerial duels, they made those cons against us, but the team has recovered. It is impressive how they have continued to fight, how they have grown in the face of adversity,” said the coach.

Regarding the speech he gave to the players before extra time, he confessed: “We had to keep believing and win the duels again. We were losing, they were doing us a lot of damage. We had to give coverage with the wings because they had equalized us in the last line. And then with the changes what we wanted was with Salma and Eva to look for speed and try to recover the ball in the center. And well, it went well and we are very happy”. As for La Roja’s good physical condition at the end of the match, he assured: “In the end it is the whole of all the work, we have been here for 50 days, but this is a match for which They’ve been preparing their whole lives. Everything counts, every match, every training session,” he said.

About Salma Paralluelo, author of the winning goal that sealed Spain’s ticket to the semifinals of the Women’s World Cup for the first time, she assured that she is a player with “enormous potential” that “has not yet reached the ceiling.” “She is a very young player, she has been in professional football for a year,” she said at a press conference after Spain’s victory over the Netherlands in the quarterfinals of the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. “She is very young and she will continue to shine, surely in the future we will see much more of what she can do”, she completed about the 19-year-old player.

Vilda described Salma’s decisive goal in the second half of extra time as “an explosion of joy”. “Today is a historic day for Spanish football,” summarized the coach.

The coach chose to leave Salma on the bench in this match, in line with his strategy of “tiring out rivals”. The winger entered the final stretch of the match and made the most of his unique skills as a former sprinter. The strategy “was part of what we wanted: work on that game, tire the centrals and then have Salma with her speed“said Vilda, about the Barcelona player, who at 15 years and 3 months old won the bronze medal in the 400 meters of the Spanish Athletics Championships and achieved the national under-18 and under-20 record.

The coach also praised the performance shown on the field by the entire team, in a performance that he defined as a “Spanish earthquake”. “The team has not stopped believing, the players have been at an extraordinary level, a match with a lot of tension and a lot of emotions. Then Salma’s goal, an explosion of joy,” he said.

After the Spanish squad “arrived to a place that had never been reached”, the coach said he was confident that Spain “can reach the highest level” in this World Cup event. For this, he assured that La Roja will begin to prepare for their next commitment, against Japan or Sweden in the semifinals but with their eye on the final. “We are among the four best in the world, but we are not going to stop. Today we do want to celebrate, but tomorrow we will prepare for the semifinals, because we want to be in the final,” she added.

After their triumph, the Spanish delegation will travel this Friday to Auckland, where they will meet the winner of the match between Japan and Sweden on August 15 in the semifinals.

Salma herself assured this Friday that she remembered “all the people who support her” after scoring her goal. “I remember all my family, all the people who support me, who love me, all my teammates for having the goal we deserved,” said Paralluelo after certifying the pass to the semifinals. “It was a counter, Jeni (Hermoso) stayed, she turned around, she threw the pass into space and I made a hole for myself to shoot and luckily she entered,” explained the Spanish attacker.

The Barcelona player stated that she had “no” preferences for the next clash on Tuesday against the winners of the clash between Japan and Sweden. “Let’s go for the next objective, as always, together, for all, laughing at ourselves and see if we can go to this final”, she assured.

Cata Coll: “We have known how to suffer”

Cata Coll, keeper of the Spanish soccer team, assured that Spain “has known how to suffer.” The Barcelona soccer player started a World Cup match for the second time and was just a few minutes away from facing a penalty shootout: “I’ve thought about it (the penalties), but it’s gone because I was so convinced that we were going to have a goal in extra time that I don’t know, that I was just hoping to score“.

The goal that the team received a few minutes after the end of the game, which led to extra time, affected the players: “If they are up, they are low. Spain has known how to suffer and we are happy“, he confessed.

About Salma’s goal: “When she hit the stick I thought it wouldn’t fit, I ran to hug them and then the emotion made us cry, we’re super happy,” added the soccer player.

Regarding her firmness on the pitch, she said she felt “very safe on the field. Today I knew what they were going to do, aerial balls and playing a lot with my foot, and luckily it turned out well for me,” she said.

Jennifer Hermoso: “It is a moment that we have dreamed of many times”

Jennifer Hermoso, top scorer for the Spanish team, stated this Friday that reaching the semifinals “is a moment we have dreamed of many times.” “I’m super excited, I can’t stop crying, it’s a moment we’ve dreamed of many times and today we have it here, I’m super happy,” said Hermoso. “I have spent many years, many things, many moments have passed that we have had to fight, that we have had to throw away. I am lucky to be able to be here, to have worked as much as possible, or everything that is in my power, to dream and enjoy days like today, ”he assured.

Beautiful, knowing that it is the second time that an absolute Spanish team reaches the semifinals of a World Cup, assured that it is “it’s the host, that’s clear.” “We are in the semifinals. It is something that I do not know how we are assuming right now. It is said soon that we will reach the end of this World Cup, be it so or not, we have two more games left. That’s it. Is that today enjoy it, smile to the fullest, cry. I am also one to laugh and cry at the same time, so enjoy today, ”she added. “Now I do believe that Spain, all of Spain, should be with us because this is no longer a coincidence. I do not think that anything has been given to us to this day, everything we have worked to be able to enjoy it and that all of Spain can feel and enjoy it too ”, he added.

Jonker, disappointed but “very proud”

The Netherlands coach, Andries Jonker, expressed the “disappointment” in the team after the defeat and elimination, but assured that he was “very proud” of his team. “The disappointment was great, we were convinced that we would reach the semifinals and finals, but we did not. Anyway, I’m very proud of this team,” he said at a post-match press conference at the Wellington Regional Stadium.

Jonker assessed that the first half of the match, for the quarterfinals of the championship, was “clearly” marked by a “superiority” by Spain, but the Dutch team recovered in the second half. “The first half we didn’t do well enough, the second half we were much better. Spain had the chances, clearly they were better in the first half,” he added. “In the second half and in extra time we showed what we had, we got into the game, in the final phase we gave everything we had, we got this fantastic goal from Stefanie,” he said.

He added that, despite the reaction and pressure from the Netherlands, Spain “deserved victory.” He also said he was “surprised” by the lineup chosen by Jorge Vilda to play the match, although he assured that the changes have not influenced the Dutch performance. “The line-up was a surprise, with several changes compared to what we expected. But Spain’s game itself was not a surprise, because we knew how they would play and they did,” he added.


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