Olympic Football Tournament

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“I would like to find Sinclair on the field.” Carla Guerrero’s wish has been granted. Indeed, the draw for the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament has put Chile and Canada in the same group, which will give the defender the opportunity to… ask forgiveness from the iconic Canadian captain: “I have it. bitten during a friendly match a few years ago. I’m still ashamed to tell it! I hope we meet in Tokyo, that she accepts my apologies and that we exchange our jerseys “.

As Guerrero recounts the events of 2013 during a four-way tournament in Brasilia, his voice reveals genuine remorse. “I was younger, I climbed quickly in the towers, I do not know what took me”, explains the Chilean, now aged 33, for FIFA.com. “I said to myself: ‘But what have you done?’. I felt very bad and I wanted to apologize, but I could not make myself understood”, says -it, still very marked.

At that time, Guerrero was not yet The boss from the Chile team. This nickname, she inherited it before the Copa América 2018, a competition that marked a before and after in the history of women’s football in the Andean country.

On his land, led by Guerrero and other cadres, the Roja took a second place synonymous with first qualification for a FIFA Women’s World Cup ™, in this case France 2019. At the same time, the locals had won a ticket for the intercontinental jump-off opening access to Tokyo 2020. A dam they recently won against Cameroon, signing another historic achievement.

Chile line up prior to the Women Olympic Football Tournament Tokyo 2020 play-off against Cameroon. Ali Yedek / @LaRoja

The Boss file

  • International debut: 10/11/2006 (Chile 1-2 Ecuador, Copa América)
  • Number of A selections: 70 (6 goals)
  • Second most capped player in the A Chilean with Francisca Lara (Christiane Endler, 79)
  • Appearances in official competitions: 31 (2 goals)
  • Chilean footballer who has played the most matches in official competitions

Guerrero was also keen to face Canada for sporting reasons. “That time they beat us 1-0. Several years have passed, but we’ve seen similar progress. You can play them eye-to-eye, while still recognizing that it’s a great nation in women’s football. “, explains the defender about Canucks, which they will face in their second game in Japan.

Chile begins its Olympic course on July 21 against Great Britain. “They can take their pick from the best English and Scottish players so that says a lot about their potential. But I don’t know if they know us too well so it can work in our favor. We feel able to defend well against they, ”she analyzes.

The last match will oppose the Roja in Japan, a team that seems to inspire Guerrero, even if they will play at home. “At the World Cup, they drew 0-0 with Argentina, who we beat recently. So it’s not illogical to think that we can do a good result against them.”

Head to the Games

Listening to Guerrero, we feel that Chile has set itself an ambitious goal. “We’re going there to defend our chances, not to participate. Maybe it will be our time!”

In the double confrontation against Cameroon, Chile showed maturity, although Guerrero admits having felt a little nervous before the first leg. “There have been so many postponements. But once what we have been working on started to work in the field, it became more peaceful.”

Guerrero even scored a goal in the first leg. “Usually I’m the one who makes the head deflections at the near post, but this time I was at the end. It’s nice to appear in the squad’s stats, as long as it helps the team. team.”

The defender was still savoring this qualification when the raffle ceremony brought it back to sporting reality. “All of a sudden, I was seized with anxiety. I started counting how much time was left… I told my mom that I wouldn’t be there for her birthday, which falls on July 22nd. And I also looked at the date of the opening ceremony because I would love to go. “

A proud and a brother

Beyond what will happen in Tokyo, The boss is aware that this group of players continues to write the history of Chilean women’s football. It is also based on a concrete example: “I am proud when I see kids wearing swimsuits from the selection flocked to my name. It’s huge to see that they take a feminine and not a masculine referent”, rejoices the Chilean number 3, who grew up admiring her brother. A brother who passed on his passion for football to him.

The record holder of the Chilean league titles also relished the recognition of her male counterparts. “This support is very important for us because it brings more visibility to us and to our discipline, by arousing a great social awareness”, underlines the one who is part of the ideal eleven of the last Copa Libertadores, from which she took fourth place with Universidad de Chile.

In any case, the Chilean footballers have written the history of their country for two reasons since it is the first time that Chile will be represented by a women’s team during the Olympics, all collective sports combined. “It’s a huge added value. It’s a way of telling other women that if they fight and work like us, they can do it too.”

Carla Guerrero of Chile evades Carli Lloyd of the United States during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup
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