Spain wins its first Women’s World Cup title, beating England 1-0 in the final
SYDNEY (AP) — Spain won its first Women’s World Cup title less than a year after a player rebellion, holding off England 1-0 on Sunday after Olga Carmona’s first-half goal.
Spain’s first major international trophy made it the first European team to win the Women’s World Cup since Germany in 2007.
At the final whistle the Spanish players piled on each other in front of their goal.
Carmona’s left-foot shot in the 29th minute went into the far corner of the net and just out of reach of diving England goalkeeper Mary Earps.
In celebration she raised her jersey to reveal the word “Merchi” scrawled in ink on her undershirt, an apparent nod to her former school.
Carmona also scored the game-winner in the 89th minute of Spain’s 2-1 semifinal victory over Sweden, becoming the first player since Carli Lloyd in 2015 to score in a World Cup semifinal and final.
Spain had a chance to double the lead in the 68th but Jenni Hermoso’s penalty attempt was saved by Earps, who anticipated perfectly and dived to her left.
Spain’s victory comes despite a near-mutiny by players last year. Fifteen players said they were stepping away from the national team for their mental health while also calling for a more professional environment.
England had momentum going into the tournament after winning the European Championship at home last summer. But three of the team’s best players, captain Leah Williamson, Fran Kirby and Beth Mead, all had knee injuries that kept them off the World Cup squad.