Women’s Soccer in Chile: From the 2012 Women’s Libertadores Cup to the 2019 Women’s World Cup

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Since 2008, women’s football in Chile has started on a new path. Various achievements have been made from 2012 to 2019 when they took place in the 2019 World Cup in France. It was something so surprising that bets on women’s football were rising in number, according to this website.

In 2008, Michelle Bachelet was celebrating her second year at the helm of the country, and swimmer Kristel Köbrich won three silver medals in the World Swimming Cup. Along with that, the great sporting event was the Women’s Under-20 World Cup, which was marked as the first significant milestone for women’s soccer in Chile.

At the tournament appeared names like Christiane Endler, Valentina Lefort, Karen Araya, Daniela Pardo, and Daniela Zamora they would become references and banners of the first Chilean Women’s Team that played in an adult world cup.

This moment can be considered as the first urgent opening of women’s soccer, the beginning of a long journey that for ten years would be achieved with the second place in the Women’s American Cup in 2018 and their participation in the Women’s World Cup in 2019.

Colo-Colo champion of the Women’s Libertadores Cup – 2012

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That is the significant milestone of the first half of the past decade, not only because of the trophy but also because this team is beginning to consolidate the base of the Chilean national organization that would later compete in the 2019 World Cup in France.

Christiane Endler, Karen Araya, Francisca Lara, and Yanara Aedo were an indispensable part of the winning of this Copa Libertadores, after defeating Foz Cataratas, the Brazilian women’s team, on penalties. By 4 to 2.

Women’s Copa América – 2014

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The Women’s Copa América took place from 11 to 28 September 2014 in Ecuador. The Chilean team showed great emotion due to the excellent performance shown in international competitions.

However, the national team was eliminated in the group phase due to goal difference. During their participation, they won twice: one against Argentina (1-0) and the other against Bolivia (3-0), and the losses against Paraguay (2-3). As in men’s football, Brazil appeared as the black beast (0-2), a team that would finally be crowned champions of the tournament.

Women’s Libertadores Cup – 2017

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Colo-Colo reached the final of the Copa Libertadores again, but this time the result was not as expected. After advancing from the group stage by beating Universitario (5-1) and Colon (5-2), and drawing with Cerro Porteno (2-2), they played the semi-final with River Plate, winning 2-0 over the Argentines. The Albas faced Audax Corinthians in the final. Still, after drawing in regulation time, the result was defined by penalties, lost in a series that ended 5-4 in favor of the Brazilians.

Women’s Copa América – 2018

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The Copa America Femenina took place from 4 to 22 April 2018 in Chile. That is the most crucial milestone in local women’s football since it began its new path to professionalism in 2008.

That is where their high point began: the team performed incredibly well and almost entirely, which allowed them to reach second place in the continental tournament, after a four-team playoff with Argentina, Colombia and Brazil, and a place in the 2019 World Cup.

The names of Christiane Endler, Daniela Pardo, Fernanda Pinilla, Carla Guerrero, Camila Saéz, Yanara Aedo, and Karen Araya, became part of the pop culture, to the point that they began to be the faces of essential advertising spots.

It’s official, the players are hired with contract – 2019

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On Tuesday 6 February 2019, Santiago Morning became the first national club to award a contract to all its players, becoming the first 100% professional team in the country.

The first Chilean players to sign were Daniela Pardo, María Francisca Mardones, Marcela Pérez, and Nicole Fajr. “Today, we have achieved this great step, we are the first four national players (with a contract), and we hope that many more will follow,” said Francisca Mardones during the presentation.

Teams like Colo-Colo joined this measure, announcing that in 2024 all their players will have a contract.

Now they are insured – 2019

He announced the officialization, by the ANFP, of the universal health insurance project for all adult players in the First and Second Divisions of the National Championship. “This news corresponds to a milestone in women’s football, in line with the process of professionalization that is taking place in the region.

We hope it will mark the end of the medical neglect and a great step towards further strengthening women’s football in the country,” ANJUFF said at the time.

Women’s World Cup – 2019

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The 2019 World Cup was not what was expected. The participation was short, being eliminated in the group phase. However, it was the first time that an adult team played the Women’s World Cup in the adult category. Also, several players were made visible, to the point that Christiane Endler was highlighted by several sports portals and even by the BBC.