The revealing image of the dressing room of the Women’s National Team when it was left out of the Olympics


The decay was enormous, an air of anguish and guilt was felt. The scene took place in one of the dressing rooms of the BBVA Stadium in Monterrey, Mexico, where minutes before the Senior Women’s Team lost the possibility of having any chance of qualifying for the Olympic Games in Paris 2024.

“The dressing room was very beat up, the truth is that I was even worried to see the sadness that I found in the locker room when I entered,” said Rodolfo Villalobos, president of the Costa Rican Soccer Federation.

Costa Rica played against Jamaica for third place in the Concacaf Championship, the third place plays a playoff in September against Canada, second in the competition, who will define the ticket to the Olympic Games, but Costa Rica fell 1-0.

“Melissa Herrera was heartbroken, apologizing for missing a goal. She was heartbroken, but she was heartbroken, ”Villalobos recalled, adding that both he and Amelia Valverde, coach of the Tricolor, tried to lift the spirits of the players.

“I spoke to the dressing room, I told them ‘girls from here we are leaving with a World Cup (Costa Rica qualified for the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand 2023), that is, we cannot leave this way'”.

Rodolfo Villalobos expressed that the sadness was enormous and that is that in the 90 regulation minutes, especially in the first half, the girls had a couple of clear chances to score and failed.

“Truly believe me, the dressing room was beaten, they were very sad. Amelia and I had to talk to them, because I honestly don’t know what would have happened if they didn’t qualify for the World Cup, surely we can’t bring them from Mexico,” said Villalobos, who considered that the press focused on being left out of the Olympics and not on what was classified. to the World Cup.

“It is time for the media to give credit to women’s football. He did not go to the Olympics and that is the news and the qualification for the World Cup was left aside. Sometimes we are a little petty in recognizing the work and the classification that they achieved”, commented the federative chief.

Villalobos stressed that the Women’s National Team must compete for tickets to the different world competitions in a very complicated confederation, because there are the world champions and the Olympic monarchs.

“There is a marked difference that has been reducing. One tries to explain it, it is not a matter of conformism, it is reality. Jamaica and Haiti have come closer, there are no longer those marked differences from 7 to 0. We must try to get closer to them (United States and Canada),” said Villalobos, who sees an advantage in trying to get closer to the North Americans, and that is that both teams are not going to grow any more.

“Those from the United States and Canada are not going to go up any more because they are at the top. Those teams have already reached their peak, gold medals, they are world champions, that is, they are powerhouses in women’s soccer”.

“We have to shorten the path, but shortening it is a long and growing process. Why have Jamaica and Haiti become strong? Because their footballers play in France and England. In addition, the friction they have and the physical part helps them. We must ensure that our players can become professionals at some point and dedicate all their time to the gym, preparation, training, nutrition, rest, everything is part of the process and we make an effort to achieve it”.

Rodolfo Villalobos added that for next year’s World Cup he will meet with Amelia Valverde to define the work and preparation plan with the idea that the team arrives in the best possible way.