Spain is the first finalist of the Women’s World Cup.
– Spain-Sweden is the challenge between the great Scandinavian tradition of women’s football and the new one, the one that has grown in recent years thanks to the push and investments of the most prestigious men’s football schools in the world: Spain belongs to this second category together with Germany , France and England. Not surprisingly, two out of four semi-finalists belong to this one new wave;
– Given these premises, it is not surprising that Spain and Sweden express two opposing schools of technical and tactical thought on the field. On the one hand, Spain with its positional game, made up of the ball on the ground, quick combinations in the strait, control of possession and pursuit of territorial domination. All based on the cultivation of the highest possible technical quality. On the other, Sweden with its brutal and primitive weapons which several prestigious victims have also reaped in this tournament: physical superiority, “control of the skies” over every ball that rises, the congestion of spaces, but also the quality for the verticalizations behind the defense that can exploit the spaces granted by the opponents. And the Red Furies concede plenty of space behind the last line, given their style of play based on a very high center of gravity: from a tactical point of view, the first world semifinal had many points of interest;
– Despite the FIFA rankings (Spain 6th, Sweden 3rd), it is not so surprising that in the end Spain won 2-1. Sweden, although perhaps too underestimated, on the eve of the World Cup did not seem equal to the other favourites, above all due to technical shortcomings. Instead, it was Spain, which so quickly climbed the hierarchies of women’s football with its clubs and national team. Maybe it’s the surprise that leaves you surprised come Spain beat the Swedes in the final. The goals all arrived in the final minutes: Salma took over for a still dull Putellas, far from the glories of the ballon d’or, and gave the Iberians the lead only to then see Blomqvist, left guilty free in the area, even the score just a few minutes later. Only one round of the clock went by and in the 89th minute Carmona scored the match goal on the development of a corner kick, with a great shot from the top of the area that touched the inside of the crossbar before hitting it. The corners that made Sweden’s fortunes throughout the tournament betrayed the Scandinavians right at the end. Not even the goalkeeper Musovic, heroine of eighths and quarters, was able to prevent the ball from entering;
– Sweden, by eliminating the United States on penalties with a psychodramatic advice from the VAR at the last shot, had in a certain sense “killed the mother”. The US movement, after years of victories and domination of international women’s football, had been robbed of the baton. Almost immediately it was seen how the USWNT was no longer what it was in the past, just as the other rivals began to raise the level. Figuratively, Spain did the same against Sweden, the first historical winner of the European Championship: a matricide which confirms that in the old continent the hierarchies of women’s football have now changedperhaps irreversibly;
– A few words about the very young girl Salma Paralluelo, born in 2003 who until a year ago practiced athletics as a semi-professional at national level while wallowing in the Spanish football cadetteria with Villarreal. Now he comes from a Liga-Champions League double (the Romanists will remember it at the Olimpico) and is preparing to play in a world final. Final to achieve which was essential: always as a substitute he decided the quarter-final against the formidable Netherlands and unlocked this semi-final with Sweden. Already today there is talk of a player with remarkable athletic and technical means, with very wide growth margins and with a remarkable ability to influence and decide matches that are, to say the least, heavy. She will turn 20 in November. Good luck with everything, see you Sunday in Sydney.