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Salma Paralluelo’s Extra Time Goal Give Spain 2-1 Win Over Netherlands

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Spain vs. Netherlands

On Friday, Spain defeated Netherlands 2-1 to go to the Women’s World Cup semifinals for the first time thanks to a goal from Salma Paralluelo in the final minute of extra time.

The 19-year-old Paralluelo scored in the 111th minute of a tense knockout game between two of the biggest names in European football, making history for Spain and eliminating the runners-up from the 2019 World Cup one round after the defending champions.

“We were successful. We fought all the way to the end. Paralluelo declared, “We have believed. “It was a special moment, great elation to have experienced that,”

She had started all of Spain’s prior games in the competition, making this her first appearance from the bench.

She joined the 71st and was quite active. After the Dutch missed two opportunities to take the lead in stoppage time, Paralluelo made the winning break down the left after receiving a feed from Jenni Hermosa, swivelled to beat Aniek Nouwen, briefly spun, and fired a left-foot shot from a tough angle.

The victory was hailed by head coach Jorge Vilda as “a great day for Spanish women’s football.”

“With a team that is confident we can go even further, we’ve reached somewhere we’ve never reached before, and done it playing a good game as well,” he remarked. “As you can see, we’re all having a good time. Even though we kept making history, the game was more challenging than it should have been.

In the final ten minutes of regulation time, Dutch defender Stefanie van der Gragt went from villain to heroine. In the 81st minute, she gave up a penalty for handball, which Mariona Caldentey scored to put Spain ahead 1-0. She then skillfully timed a run from Victoria Pelova’s through ball at the opening of stoppage time and produced a precise finish to square the scores.

It was a record for the Women’s World Cup, the 147th goal of the competition, and a thrilling conclusion to van der Gragt’s final match for the national side.

When a cross struck her outstretched right arm as she patrolled the area’s line, it initially looked as though her career might end cruelly when Spain was given a penalty following a VAR review.

As the stadium fell silent, Caldentey placed the ball there, backed up a few paces, stopped and shuffled before firing a low shot into the left corner that misfired at keeper Daphne Van Domselaar.

After that, van der Gragt scored the equaliser to force overtime, during which Lineth Beerensteyn came the closest to scoring for the Dutch.

She appeared to be tenacious as she made a break for the goal, but her initial shot was blocked.

“We gave it our all. We made an effort to hide our flaws and highlight our strengths, but there is only one way to win: play forward, get the ball, hold onto it, and win the game, according to Dutch coach Andries Jonker. “What we demonstrated during this tournament was occasionally outstanding and other times it was less than that.”

Esther Gonzalez’s close-range finish on an Alba Redondo cross in the 37th minute gave Spain the finest chance to take the lead during the scoreless first half. Gonzalez had only slightly veered offside, according to a VAR review.

Although Redondo and Gonzalez posed a continual threat, Spain was unable to complete the play. In addition, the Spanish knitted closely, finishing 259 passes to the Netherlands’ 182. For Spain, Aitana Bonmati always had a creative role to perform.

In an effort to find Beerensteyn, Netherlands pressed and launched long balls forward. In the 28th minute, they finally made contact, and Beerensteyn pulled the ball back for Esmee Brugts to cross. Damaris Egurolla was just inches away from scoring when she did so.

When Irene Paredes received a yellow card in the 62nd minute for a fight with Beerensteyn in the vicinity, the VAR prevented the Dutch from scoring. To Jonker’s dismay, the penalty and the card were reversed following a video review.

The VAR “didn’t do their job properly, in my opinion, but (Spain) deserved to win,” stated Jonker. Just that this choice wasn’t the right one. It was incorrect.

“The most important thing is that this is the Netherlands, and we can play football and defeat Spain.”

Since 2015, Paredes and Alexia Putellas, who started on the bench and entered the game late in the first session of extra time, have participated in each of Spain’s 12 World Cup games.

On a sunny but chilly afternoon, slightly over 32,000 people attended the game, including FIFA president Gianni Infantino and New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins. The Orongorongo mountains’ tops, which stood out against the clear sky across the harbour from Sky Stadium, received overnight snowfall. An hour before the game began, an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.6 shook Wellington.

The players weren’t alarmed by it. At this World Cup, the Dutch have travelled the most. Based in Tauranga on New Zealand’s North Island, they travelled to Australia for the round of 16 before returning to Wellington after playing in Wellington, Dunedin, and Australia. They now have to make one unpleasant trip.

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