The Royal Spanish Football Federation announced the passing of Olga Carmona’s father a few hours after she scored the winning goal for Spain in the Women’s World Cup final in Sydney on Sunday.
In the 29th minute, the 23-year-old gave Spain a 1-0 lead over England after moving the ball down the pitch and hitting it with her left foot into the bottom corner of the net. Before she was selected as the most valuable player in the final, she danced and celebrated with her teammates.
When Carmona’s father died away is unknown. The statement did not specify the cause of death or exactly when she learned of his passing.
Carmona was picked to speak to the media at the post-game press conference after the trophy was awarded. She made no indication that she had received the news through words or actions.
Throughout the game, the fullback kept thinking about another defeat. She raised her shirt to reveal the writing “Merchi” on her compression top as she applauded her success.
“First of all I want to say that this victory, this achievement, goes to the mother of one of my friends who has recently passed away,” she said after Sunday’s final. “I celebrated the goal with her shirt and from here dedicate it to the whole family with all my love.”
Carmona was Spain’s hero for the second time that week on Sunday. She became the first player since Carli Lloyd of the United States in 2015 to score in both a World Cup semifinal and final when she also scored a dramatic 89th-minute winner in La Roja’s semifinal victory over Sweden on Tuesday.
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