Armenia (Colombia), July 23 (EFE) — The women’s teams from Chile and Venezuela will play for World Cup playoff rights in New Zealand and Australia this Sunday, while Jose Letelier, as if playing his luck in Russian roulette, will take you to the final. With the result it will be known whether your position will be in the hands of another coach.
The 56-year-old former football player is experiencing the most crucial moments on the bench as his results as coach earned him an indefinite contract with the Chilean federation, the National Association of Professional Soccer (ANFP), in 2015.
La Rosa Femenina was abandoned on 20 July on the sidelines of the semi-finals of the Copa América, which takes place in Colombia, a reality that marginalizes it from the 2024 Paris Olympics.
And this Sunday, the match against Venezuela for fifth place in the coffee-growing city of Armenia has become a source of pressure and pride for Chilean football players.
The challenge is not an easy one as the women’s Vinotinto won two consecutive friendly matches against the Reds in the preparatory phase for the ongoing Copa América.
Thus, winning means handing over a ticket to the 2023 World Cup playoffs and losing, the end of a cycle of hope.
Letelier arrived at ANFP seven years ago to lead the U20 team, and shortly after he took charge of the senior team, with whom he reached the 2018 Copa America final, which he lost to Brazil.
He also took Chile to their maiden World Cup, France 2019 and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
‘El Pulpo’ is the only Chilean footballer who was champion of the Copa Libertadores in 1991 with Colo Colo as goalkeeper, and in 2012 as a women’s version as coach, also of the Cacique club.
But according to people close to the team centered in Armenia, the unrest experienced by the team during the Copa America in Colombia has begun to signal a great breakdown on the work of the technical commission.
And with metal fatigue, the inductors of change are splitting into two currents.
Those who seek a foreign coach to follow the successful experiences of Brazil with Swedish Pia Sundhej and successful experiences of Venezuela with Italian Pamila Conti. And those leaning toward a more at-home recipe, such as Carlos Veliz, technical director of the female staff at Universidad de Chile.
Emilie Lima, who in 2017 became the first woman to lead the Brazil women’s national team, is the promoters candidate of an overseas formula in Chile.
Lima, 41, announced on 20 July the end of his cycle with the Ecuadorian team, which he directed for two and a half years since 2019.
Lima, who has already returned to her home country, hopes to define her new soccer challenge in the days to come.