Colombian Women’s Selection: the World Cup and the fight against inequality – International Soccer – Sports

The Colombian Women’s Soccer Team is already in Australia for its biggest challenge, the 2023 World Cup. And the trip was not without its troubles: the group had to travel divided in two.

The presence in the tournament is a prize for a team that has had to overcome many factors against it, unfulfilled promises and even indications of bans on players, never officially confirmed.

The World Cup is played in the midst of the women’s struggle to win their space and achieve equality in sport. The gap is still very big.

This year, Fifa once again increased the tournament prizes: it will distribute 150 million dollars among the participating teams. The figure is ten times higher than what was awarded in Colombia’s last participation, the 2015 World Cup in Canada, in which the team reached the second phase of the tournament, and three times more than the awards of the previous edition, held in Canada.

However, that award is still far from what Fifa distributes in the men’s World Cup. In Qatar 2022, the prizes amounted to 440 million dollars.

Women’s football still fights against inequality

The teams from Norway and the United States have taken the flag of equality in prizes, per diems and image rights, and they have already achieved it. Another 11 teams from the participants in the Women’s World Cup also achieved it for this edition. Both hosts Australia and New Zealand are on the list, as are South Africa, Denmark, Finland, Brazil, England, the Netherlands, Ireland, Spain, Wales and Canada.

Women’s soccer still has many fights to fight. A 2018 report by the International Federation of Football Players (Fifpro) revealed that 49 percent of professional team players did not receive a salary. And that generated a huge dropout: 87 percent of them ended their career before reaching the age of 25.

The Colombian cases

Two players with the past of the Colombian National Team, Nicole Regnier and Isabella Echeverri, retired very early. The first did it at the age of 25, in 2021, and the second hung up the guayos at 29, with the idea of ​​continuing to fight for those who come behind.
When Colombia’s squad for the World Cup came out, Echeverri couldn’t hide his sadness.

«I retired 6 months ago, but seeing that list and knowing that I never got a chance, when I deserved it, was harder than I thought,» he wrote on his Twitter account. And he added, about his fight: “I would do it again a thousand times. My legacy will be from the outside, always with the banner of justice, inclusion and equity in hand.»

The difficulties that the National Team faced to get to Australia are only part of the problems that women’s soccer has yet to overcome in Colombia (see alternate note). There is still a huge gap. But the Colombian National Team remains firm. He is already smiling in Australia and is getting ready for a World Cup in which he thinks big.

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