BRADENTON, Florida – Despite coming up just short in the final of the 2018 CONCACAF Women’s Under-17 Championship, losing 3-2 to the United States, for DF Nicole Soto and her Mexico teammates the CWU 17 was a wonderful chance to grow as a team.
“This tournament was a great experience,” said Soto in a post-match interview with CONCACAF.com.
“This team really loves each other and I think what makes it so special is that when everyone is working together as a team that’s when we make our magic,” added Soto.
It was a back and forth final between Mexico and the U.S., with El Tricolor taking 1-0 and 2-1 leads before the U.S. rallied with two second half goals to take the title.
Overall, though, Soto was happy with Mexico’s performance.
“I feel like we defended we really well but I don’t think we had enough pressure on corners and we needed to work on our rebounds and stuff like that. But we gave everything and we have more in our attack which will show at the World Cup,” said Soto.
All throughout the tournament the Mexico players showcased their skills, whether it was Alison Gonzalez and Natalia Mauleon in attack scoring four goals each, or brilliant defensive play like Soto’s goal-line clearance of Sunshine Fontes’ 3’ minute shot in the final on Tuesday.
This is a Mexico team that is versatile and has belief that they can go far at the 2018 Under-17 Women’s World Cup in Uruguay.
“We like to build the ball up from side to side, moving up, passing. We’re not a very direct team and we like to mix it up here and there. I think we trained super well and put a lot of time in with strengthening, fitness and working with the ball as well. Everyone is so excited. We were super happy with our result against Canada [in the semifinals] and we’ll be ready to finish better at the World Cup,” concluded Soto.