The richly awaited FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 officially kicks off on June 7 at the 47,929 capacity Parc des Princes in Paris.
Jorge Vilda’s Spain women’s national team firmly anticipates their opening encounter of the tournament on June 8 against South Africa at the Stade Océane in Le Havre. Thereafter, La Roja faces tests against Martina Voss-Tecklenburg’s Germany in their second group match at the Stade de Hainaut in Valenciennes (June 12) and five days later against China PR (June 17) inside the Stade Océane in Le Havre in their third and final group game of the tournament.
Spain’s qualification, however, for FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 ultimately witnessed La Roja win all eight qualifying games in Group seven, whilst scoring 25 goals and conceding just two during the women’s national side’s undefeated run during qualification. La Roja furthermore perfectly tallied 24 points during qualification and are presently ranked thirteenth in the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Rankings (women).
Moreover, Jorge Vilda’s in-form Spain finished eight points clear ahead of group runners up Austria, who lost to Spain on the two occasions which the sides met during qualification for FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019. On four occasions during qualification for FIFA World Cup France 2019, Spain scored three goals or more as evident in their impressive victories over Israel (6-0), Austria (4-0), Finland (5-1) and Serbia (3-0).
Spain also collectively scored the fourth most amount of goals during qualification after Germany (38), England (29) and Belgium (28). Spain additionally registered the joint second-best defensive record (conceding two goals) with Sweden and The Netherlands during qualification with England (one) boasting the most superior defensive record during qualification. Elsewhere, Jennifer Hermoso scored seven goals for La Roja during Spain’s qualification for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019, whereas Spain’s Irene Pardes registered four goals on the road to qualification.
Prior to the kick off of the much-awaited FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 in Paris in two weeks time, FOX Sports 96.9 FM/1340 AM’s Dean Perretta briefly caught up with Spain women’s national team star and Levante UF Femenino midfielder, Marta Corredera, to discuss La Roja’s ambitions and expectations for FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019, Levante UD Femenino’s season and, of course, the very positive growth of the women’s game.
Dean Perretta: Marta, what are your overall thoughts on Spain’s group for the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019?
Marta Corredera: It is a complicated group starting with South Africa (on June 8). That is the champion of Africa and that (continent) is going up much, its level in relation to other championships (around the world), more or less as it is happening to China. They (South Africa) are starting to get successes, is a very tidy team that does not get tired of running the 90 minutes and that makes it a very dangerous team. Finally, Germany, little to say – two times (FIFA women’s) world champion, eight times champion of Europe and current Olympic champion; a great team with which we will compete as already happened in the friendly we play against them in Germany where we tied and at times we were better than them. Therefore, a complicated and very open group.
Dean Perretta: How would you describe the philosophy and mindset of Jorge Vilda from a players perspective?
Marta Corredera: What we always try to instill Jorge (Vilda) is that the only mentality is worth the effort and work and that without those two premises will not achieve our goals and is what we try to do every time we put the shirt of the Spanish team and represent to our country.
Dean Perretta: Can you talk about the qualities of the Spain women’s national team and the confidence of the La Roja players who have been selected for FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019?
Marta Corredera: I think we have a team with a lot of quality, with players of mostly midfield touch and that is fundamental for competitions that are decided by small details to take advantage of those opportunities that we will have to materialize in points. As a team, we are a unit and that we have a lot of confidence in each other and that is one of our weapons. That player who plays has the confidence of the team.
Dean Perretta: After the great success and popularity of FIFA World Cup Canada 2015, do you believe that this summer in France will be another important chapter and progressive benchmark for women’s football?
Marta Corredera: Yes, I do think so. The Canadian World Cup was our first time and that always weighs, but now four years after, women’s football in Spain has grown in an incredible way. The league (Liga Femenina Iberdrola) has become stronger (in our country) and a clear example is that FC Barcelona (Femení) has played (against Olympique Lyonnais Féminen), for the first time in the history for a Spanish team, the Final of the ( 2018/2019 UEFA Women’s) champions (League), all that has made the (Spain) players raise our level of competitiveness, coupled with the work that is done in lower categories that so great results are giving to Spanish football.
Dean Perretta: Lastly, can you talk about your season at Levante UD Femenino and the ambitions and goals at the club?
Marta Corredera: Signing with Levante (UD Femenino) was a risky decision (last summer from Atlético de Madrid Femenino), but the future of this project and the desire to grow made me opt for this team where in the first season (2018/2019) we have been third in league (Liga Femenina Iberdrola) and I think we have covered the goals that were marked by the club at the beginning of season, which was no other than to compete with FC Barcelona (Femení) and Atlético de Madrid (Femenino).