Vilda, Spain coach: “Since we started, the soul of this team has grown” | Women’s Soccer World Cup 2023

The coach Jorge Vilda at the press conference before the match against the Netherlands.
The coach Jorge Vilda at the press conference before the match against the Netherlands.AMANDA PEROBELLI (REUTERS)

Zero degrees, gusts of wind as impertinent as they are aggressive, perennial rain… The New Zealand winter does not let up, nor do the inflexible time zones, as Spain will face the Netherlands in the quarterfinals of the World Cup at 1:00 p.m. Or, what is the same, the broadcast in Spain will be at three in the morning. “Wake up!” Asked the Dutch coach Andries Jonker, direct and from vangal out of conviction, since he worked with Louis Van Gaal in the men’s team, Barça and Bayern; “It’s a shame that it’s being played at this time and that the fans have to get up to watch the game. But they are the consequences of having a World Cup in this part of the world. I think, however, that it will be an excellent duel and if you like good football and tension, I encourage you to watch it.” Vilda looked for a turn: “Don’t let them go to bed. I think it’s easier… That they lengthen a little. Thursdays now are Fridays before. We are not going to disappoint, it is a historic day and we want to make the whole country happy”. The reward: reach a semifinal in the World Cup and rewrite history.

Spain dreams of a border never crossed, an unknown scenario. The same as the alleged proposal from the Netherlands because until now the rivals waited for him behind, low block and the cons by flag. It does not seem that the Dutch team wants the same, with good taste for construction, concerned with generating superiorities on the inside to push themselves on the outside and finish the plays, accurate in the shot. “They are a very solid team, they have three central defenders that go well up and down, they are also very dangerous and strong from set pieces, and they also have players who can decide at least if you don’t care. Like Roord, you don’t realize it and he’s already scored two goals for you”. Jonker took over: “Spain always plays the same game, the Spanish game. They appreciate what they do, play the ball. It is what we like and respect. But we have played two games at a high level and we have shown what we are made of. We think we can win and we are not afraid of them, ”he clarified. Vilda replied: “We don’t have secrets or fear that something about our football will be revealed. They know how we play, our philosophy”.

Although Spain was choked by Japan, a team as disciplined as it is effusive in the counters, the Netherlands has another road map. “We will determine our way of playing and we are not going to copy them,” reflected winger Lineth Beerensteyn, also a Juventus player. Jonker also saw a different match than the one expressed by the marker. “I look at football my way. Spain played, created… Football is strange because sometimes the best team doesn’t win and I think the Spanish team played a great game”. Vilda, in any case, is clear about the plan: “The game is decided in the areas but against the Netherlands there can be a mini game in the center of the field because they have quality players in the middle, who dominate the spaces and the position ”.

The Netherlands, runner-up in the previous World Cup and European champion in 2017, are quiet in these tense matches, although they have the loss of midfielder Van de Donk. “I don’t think experience makes a difference, especially since the Spanish women also have a lot of experience with the Champions League and matches at a very high level,” Jonker slipped. He argued that he bought a Vilda that can already count on all its players: “Yes, they have experience at the national team level, but our players have also been in important matches, in clubs and lower categories of the national team.” And he closed: “I have noticed that since we started, the soul of this team is greater. And at the end of the last training there was a special energy. I really like what I see in the eyes of my players”. It’s time to play, they play the quarterfinals of a World Cup.

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