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World Cup ‘a turning point’ for Colombian women’s football: coach

Colombia coach Nelson Abadia called their World Cup “a turning point” for women’s football in the country despite the disappointment of losing in the quarter-finals to England on Saturday.

His team came into the tournament as rank-outsiders but won the hearts of fans with their attacking flair, energy and never-say-die attitude.

While they shocked world number two Germany in topping their group and made the last eight for the first time, European champions England proved too much in a 2-1 defeat in Sydney.

“We have peace of mind because we know we had very good performances all along in the World Cup, and proved how Colombian football has progressed,” said Abadia.

“This is clearly a turning point for women’s football in Colombia and this will make us reflect to see what we have to do from now on.

“This is an excellent time but we need to be better than this, I know we will have support from the executive committee (federation) because we have shown what women’s football in Colombia can be. Today we were a team like Brazil,” he added.

Colombia’s run to the last eight may have taken many by surprise, but it has been the product of years of building, with Abadia at the heart.

They failed to qualify for the 2019 World Cup, but won gold at the Pan American Games for the first time that year and were runners-up at last year’s Copa America to Brazil.

“This is a reflection of everything we have been doing for six or seven years,” said Abadia, adding that they must now build on their achievement.

“I have peace of mind, but I am not satisfied.

“We need to push our players, give them inspiration, take them to Africa and Europe to play, we want players who are very young and those with experience so they can have solid foundations.”


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