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Julie Foudy: USWNT ‘have never moved the ball like Spain’

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Spain's Olga Carmona controls the ball against England's Lauren Hemp during the 2023 World Cup final. (Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Spain’s ball movement during its World Cup title win caught the eye of U.S. women’s national team great Julie Foudy.

One user on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, lamented during the match that the U.S. used to move the ball like Spain. Foudy responded, saying the comment was “very kind” but incorrect.

“We have never moved the ball like Spain does,” she wrote. “Their grace on the ball is gorgeous to watch.”

Spain won the World Cup final, 1-0, over England on Aug. 20, thanks to a first-half goal from Olga Carmona. La Roja spent much of the rest of the match knocking on the door of another goal, with 57% possession and 81% passing accuracy on 486 total passes.

And when the Lionesses came knocking, Spain shut them down to hold on for the win.

With the victory, Spain claimed its first senior World Cup win, after having won the most recent Under-20 World Cup title and the two most recent Under-17 World Cup titles. Emerging Spanish talent Salma Paralluelo played a role in both the 2022 U-20 and the 2018 U-17 titles, as well as the 2023 senior title.

“Congrats to Spain, getting that FIRST WORLD CUP win at senior level,” Foudy said in a later post. “They’ve completely dominated the youth level for (the) last five years. So much success at U-17 and U-20 level. And then, to do it without all of their top players here. Their domination is just getting started. So impressive.”