Monday 29 August 2022, 04:00

Paralluelo propels Spain to revenge and glory

  • Spain beat Japan 3-1 in an intoxicating Costa Rica 2022 final

  • Salma Paralluelo’s two goals powered them to victory

  • It avenged defeat to the Young Nadeshiko in the 2018 decider

Spain have etched their name on the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup trophy. Pedro Lopez’s side avenged defeat to Japan in the 2018 decider by beating the same side by the same score in the climax to a thrilling tournament. Salma Paralluelo emerged as the star of the final, scoring two of three Rojita goals inside 15 first-half minutes.

The Japanese, to their credit, gave it everything to get back into the game. Ultimately, though, they were undone by one of the most mind-blowing periods in competition history. Spaniards, take a bow.


Spain 3-1 Japan Player of the Match: Salma Paralluelo

Memorable moments

Salma shines Salma Paralluelo has been as magical to watch as excruciating to mark at this tournament, and she saved her best performance until last. Utterly unplayable in the half, she employed an exquisite touch to take down a long ball from Andrea Medina, before accelerating through on goal and scoring an absolute beauty. What a future Barcelona’s latest recruit has. The young bodyguard The Japanese fighting spirit is the stuff of legend, and despite being 3-0 down, Japan refused to throw in the towel. Maika Hamano, Yuzuki Yamamoto and Co laid siege to their adversaries’ goal, but the found Txell Font in inspirational form. How is this keep only 17? THE moment Unbridled emotion was unleashed at the sound of the final whistle. Spain had followed up winning the FIFA U-17 World Cup™ in 2018 by conquering the U-20 crown in San Jose. The only title missing from the global collection is the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ trophy, and you can be sure some of the stars of their Costa Rica 2022 campaign will be aiding their quest at Australia & New Zealand 2023.


9 Spain ended Japan’s undefeated run in the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup at nine games. The Young Nadeshiko’s last loss in the competition had been 1-0 to Spain in the group stage at France 2018. 8 Inma Gabarro’s eighth goal made her the first player in 12 years to score more than seven times in one edition of the tournament. The only players to have netted more in one FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup are Kelly Wilson (9 in 2002), Christine Sinclair (10 in 2002) and Alex Popp (10 in 2010). 2 Paralluelo became only the second player to register multiple goals in a FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup final. Korea DPR’s Kim Songhui hit a 13-minute hat-trick in a 5-0 thumping of China PR in 2006.