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The Echo

The student news site of St. Louis Park High School

The Echo

The student news site of St. Louis Park High School

The Echo

A lot of penal-tea this World Cup

Spain wins the Women’s World Cup 2023
Kirsten Romness
Nigeria and England face off in the women’s World Cup Aug. 7. England won 4-2 on a penalty shootout in Brisbane, Australia.

If your life depended on one person missing a wide open goal, who would you ask to take the shot? After watching the USA vs. Sweden game, most would pick Megan Rapinoe. After a sloppy group stage, USA fans were not feeling good about their country taking home the World Cup win, and we did not. 

Even though the US were disappointing to watch, there were some unexpectedly good teams that showed up. Judging by how every team who had won a World Cup got knocked out when the quarter finals were decided, it’s obvious these are not the same teams from 2019. The teams to watch were Spain, Sweden (after Zećira Mušović dominated over the US), Australia, The Netherlands and England.

Right from the start Spain was looking great, but there was a lot of messiness behind-the-scenes. Some of the best players in the world refused their call-ups for the World Cup. Patri (Patricia) Guijarro, Mapi (María) León and Sandra Paños did not want to play because they needed to stick to their values — they asked the Spanish Federation for a change in coaching (Jorge Vilda) and the federation refused. A few other players refused as well, but all Vilda did was replace these starters with backups. 

Even without these amazing players, Spain came out on top in the World Cup and brought home the win. However, a few days after winning, every starter and almost every backup player (adding up to around 60 players in all) signed a letter stating they will not play for the Spain national team if they don’t see change. 

I have been a Spain fan from the very start and it was hard watching all their games. They played extremely well, but like every other fan, I was worried if they won there would be no changes. I was cheering for them, but had a quiet sense of dread after each goal was scored. However with this letter, hopefully the Spanish Federation will step up and realize change is needed. 

The second place winners, England, played amazingly without their captain Leah Williamson and many other injured players like Beth Mead and Fran Kirby. England stayed strong even after an ACL scare with Keira Walsh in the Denmark vs. England game. Some may say they were disappointing to watch, but considering some of their best players couldn’t play, it was inspiring that they still made second place. 

The third place game was a big one. With Australia playing for their home and Sweden’s amazing goalkeeper, it was very suspenseful. Both of these teams played amazingly in this World Cup and both deserved to make it that far. 

This World Cup had many unexpected twists, and had a very interesting turnout. Although the US got kicked out early, there were great teams to watch. Maybe with Vlatko Andonovski gone, the USA can come back stronger than ever in 2027.

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About the Contributor
Jesse Belen
Jesse Belen, Multimedia Editor
Hey everyone!! My name is Jesse. I’m a sophomore and a copy editor for Echo. I love to play as a goalkeeper for soccer so you can usually find me on the field but when I’m not playing I’m most often cozying up in a bunch of blankets reading a book or watching Gilmore Girls. I am so excited to continue my time in Echo!!! 

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